Message #205:
From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG
To:   "'Matthias Giessler'" 
Subject: Metal Detectorists Digging Up Phoenix Indian School?
Date: Sat, 31 May 1997 19:58:29 -0700


From:	Steve Weiss  

Every weekend I see these guys in the front area of the old Phoenix
Indian School with metal detectors.  Are they doing illegal looking?

SWA Response:

At minimum, if they do not have the permission of the property owner,
they probably are trespassing.  

Except for human burials and associated grave goods, the digging up
sites or the keeping of artifacts found on private property are not
covered under AZ law.  Also, some artifacts are excluded from AZ statute
(e.g., bottles, coins, arowheads, anything less than 100 years old).

Regardless of antiquity, all human burials and associate grave goods
must be reported regardless of the location of discovery or the land
ownership status.  

On government-owned or public lands, metal detecting, probing and
digging may be illegal -- but -- it depends on the jurisdiction and the
statute under consideration.

Usually metal detectors are told to 'move on' by responding officers
because the detectors rarely have obtained landowner permision.  Since
the police are quite reticent to arrest or cite detectors for being on
someone elses property,  the metal detectors tend to continue
trespassing and probing or digging.

They get in real trouble when they set their sights on historic and
prehistoric properties and artifacts located on State trust lands, or
municipal, county, state or federal lands, or, Indian reservations.  

I do not know the ownership status of the old Phoenix Indian School
Property at this time.  You may remember that  there was a deal in the
works between the City of Phoenix, the federal government and the Barron
Collier Company to swap lands.  This clouded status (in the minds of
local residents) probably has the detectorists feeling quite secure that
they can dig and probe there with impuinity.