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South Brunswick Disorderly Conduct Lawyer
When an argument gets out of hand at a bar, sporting event, during an encounter with police or in another context in South Brunswick, it is not unusual for a disorderly conduct charge to be filed. Disorderly conduct arises much more often than you might think, in fact, as it is a “catch all” that members of the South Brunswick Police Department resort to whenever they are looking to charge someone causing a public disturbance and threatening public peace (a.k.a. disturbing the peace). Although a violation of this law results is a misdemeanor as opposed to a felony, a conviction automatically results in a criminal record that can certainly impact your future employment opportunities and other endeavors. No one needs consequences such as these nor to pay hefty fines or even be exposed to a county jail sentence. The lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have over a century of combined experience defending disorderly conduct charges arising in South Brunswick and will fight to have your charges degraded or dismissed. The attorneys on our defense team include Jason Seidman, Esq., a former director in the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. A lawyer on our staff, including several other ex-prosecutors who have appeared in South Brunswick on countless occasions, is ready to assist you. To speak directly to a qualified attorney, please call us at 609-683-8102 and we will be happy to provide a comprehensive free consultation.
South Brunswick Disorderly Conduct Offense
The language of N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2 details how someone can commit the offense of disorderly conduct in South Brunswick. There are two ways that an individual can violate this law. The first category of disorderly conduct targets “improper behavior” in public. An individual violates 2C:33-4 in this manner when they engage in “fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior” or when they “create a hazardous or physically dangerous condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose”. Some examples conduct that can result in this form of South Brunswick disorderly conduct charge include threatening another person, for example, a neighbor with whom you arguing or engaging in violent behavior in a bar or at a sporting event.
The second way someone can act disorderly under 2C:33-4 is by using offensive language that causes or has the potential to cause inconvenience or disturbance to the “public”. Words constitute a violation if they are “with purpose to offend the sensibilities of a hearer or in reckless disregard of the probability of so doing, [they are] unreasonably loud and offensively coarse or abusive language, given the circumstances of the person present and the setting of the utterance”.
Elements of Disorderly Conduct. If the disorderly conduct charge arises as a form of improper behavior the state must prove that the defendant had purpose to cause or create a risk of public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm. It must also be proved the defendant engaged in fighting, threatening, or tumultuous behavior. Additionally, the court must prove that behavior was conducted in “public.” In this regard, “public” means any setting that is accessible to the people such as highways, schools, places of business, and apartment homes or neighborhoods. For someone to violate 2C:33-4 for offensive language, they must speak in a public place and the purpose to offend someone or recklessly disregard the probability that someone would be offended. The language must also be unreasonably loud or offensively course or abusive in nature.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct. In New Jersey disorderly conduct is classified as a petty disorderly persons offense which is handled at the South Brunswick Municipal Court. A disorderly persons offense can carry penalties that include up to $500 in fines, probation and even 30 days in the Middlesex County Jail. If you caused property damage during the commission of the offense, the court may also order you to pay restitution. A conviction for disorderly conduct results in a misdemeanor criminal record that will appear on a background check.
South Brunswick Disorderly Conduct Defense Attorney
As if the penalties for disorderly conduct in South Brunswick were not bad enough, a conviction also results in a record that will follow you for many years. This can effect you in many ways and should be avoided at all cost. This is where the lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can help you. A defense attorney at the firm will work diligently to help you avoid a conviction and this is, in fact, what we are able to accomplish in an overwhelming percentage of disorderly conduct cases we handle in Middlesex County. If you were arrested and/or charged with disorderly conduct in South Brunswick, we definitely have the tools to successfully defend the offense. A lawyer is available immediately by contacting our East Brunswick Office at 732–227–1200 for an initial consultation.