Tampa Disorderly Conduct Charges
Tampa Defense Lawyers with 40 Years of Combined Experience
Have you ever heard of the crime of disorderly conduct? If not, it’s one of those seemingly petty offenses that lead to an arrest. Usually, this offense has to do with being too loud, getting into a screaming match on a public street with your partner, or playing your music too loud despite people’s requests for you to turn it down—those types of circumstances. In other words, if it’s loud, annoying, and you refuse to stop, the police can arrest you. Before you know it, you’re facing second-degree misdemeanor charges even if you weren’t hurting anybody.
At Thomas & Paulk, our Tampa violent crime defense lawyers know just how daunting it can be to face criminal charges involving disorderly conduct. Throughout the years, we have successfully handled thousands of cases, and we have proven that we know how to best defend our clients’ legal rights.
Take two successes our criminal defense attorneys achieved in disorderly conduct cases:
- Disorderly Intoxication: Our client was a recent University of Tampa graduate who was arrested after being asked to leave a Tampa pub for disorderly intoxication. Our client was accused of disturbing others in the area. However, law enforcement did not get the names of any of the witnesses. Our client was also not asked to complete any breath or field sobriety tests. Due to this complete lack of evidence, we convinced the State not to file any charges.
- Disorderly Conduct: Our client was approached at the Hard Rock Casino by security, who took her purse after receiving a report of a firearm inside. Our client had a valid concealed weapon permit and objected to the seizure of her purse. After claiming that she was disturbing the other casino patrons, our client was arrested for disorderly conduct. We took on the case and filed a motion to dismiss since our client was objecting to unlawful conduct. All charges were dismissed.
Call (813) 321-7323 today to find out how to fight your disorderly conduct charges in Tampa. We have the experience and know-how to help.
What Is Disorderly Conduct?
Most states have a disorderly conduct law on the books, and Florida is no exception. Under Section 877.03 of the Florida Statutes, if you do something that corrupts the public’s morals, outrages the sense of public decency, or affects the peace and quiet, or if you engage in a brawl or fight, you can be charged with disorderly conduct, a second-degree misdemeanor. Some face these charges when they get into a loud argument with their significant other or when they let their emotions get the best of them while arguing with a stranger.
The following are potential examples of disorderly conduct:
- A couple gets into a screaming match outside of a bar.
- A man parks in front of a dining area, blasts his music, and won’t turn it down when asked.
- A man sets up his drums in an outdoor shopping area and plays, even though he’s been asked to leave.
- In a quiet library, a few college students decide to blast music on their phones, disturbing the peace.
Disorderly Intoxication (Public Drunkenness)
Disorderly intoxication is described in Section 856.011(1) of the Florida Statutes: “No person in the state shall be intoxicated and endanger the safety of another person or property, and no person in the state shall be intoxicated or drink any alcoholic beverage in a public place or in or upon any public conveyance and cause a public disturbance.” This means is that it’s illegal for an intoxicated person to:
- Endanger the safety of another person
- Endanger the safety of property
- Drink alcohol in public and cause a public disturbance
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct
Disorderly conduct and disorderly intoxication are second-degree misdemeanors. Both are punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500. If you have been arrested, contact our firm as soon as possible. There are several defenses that we may be able to advance on your behalf. For example, we may argue that there is a lack of evidence, that you were not acting disorderly, or even that it was a case of mistaken identity.
If you or someone you love has been accused of disorderly conduct, you are not without hope. At Thomas & Paulk, we have successfully represented numerous individuals who have been charged with similar offenses. While this is not a guarantee of future results, it is indicative of our commitment to our clients and our ability to handle even complex cases.
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