A walk on the courthouse lawn could now get you cited for trespassing and a date in court.
Acting on complaints of people spending the night in the gazebo, the Morgan County Commissioners voted Friday to make the courthouse lawn off limits from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Morgan County Prosecutor Steve Sonnega said there have been problems with people in the gazebo making inappropriate statements to his female staff. He said his office, and those of several of his staff, have a direct view of the gazebo and the activities that go on within. "It goes on day and night."
Sonnega said the gazebo has become an eyesore.
"It's not a hotel," he said.
Commissioner Norman Voyles said he had received complaints from other people about what was going on in the gazebo. He said some people want to demolish it.
The commissioners discussed different ideas, such as making the gazebo off limits from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. unless the person has permission from the commissioners to use it after 6 p.m.
There was some discussion that people now using the gazebo would move to other areas of the courthouse.
At the end, the commissioners decided to make the lawn off limits from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Anyone on the lawn after that time may be cited for trespassing.
The commissioners said the only area they control is the courthouse. The sidewalk outside the courthouse belongs to the city.