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Plainsboro Disorderly Conduct Lawyer
Charged With Disorderly Conduct in Plainsboro New Jersey
A 20-year-old Plainsboro man hosted a party where underage attendees became publicly intoxicated resulting in charges being filed by the Plainsboro Police. Charges for disorderly conduct, maintaining a nuisance and making alcohol available to minors were filed in Plainsboro Municipal Court. Similar stories involving lapse in judgement are commonplace in Plainsboro. Irrespective of the fact pattern that resulted in your being charged with disorderly conduct in Plainsboro, it is absolutely in your best interests to obtain the services of a skilled defense lawyer.
While there may be a tendency to try to handle a Plainsboro disorderly conduct charge without an attorney, this is a shortsighted approach. The biggest reason for this statement lies in the fact that you will have a criminal record that can compromise your future if you fail to avoid a guilty finding. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have extensive experience helping clients in Plainsboro Municipal Court who are charged with disorderly conduct. Because we offer a free initial consultations, there is no cost for you to speak with our lawyers. Call us at 732-246-7126.
Plainsboro Disorderly Conduct Offense
The law in New Jersey for disorderly conduct outlines two categories of breach of peace – improper behavior and offensive language. The exact language of this offense is contained at N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2, which provides:
Improper behavior. A person is guilty of a petty disorderly persons offense, if with purpose to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof, he
(1) Engages in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior; or
(2) Creates a hazardous or physically dangerous condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose of the actor.
Offensive language. A person is guilty of a petty disorderly persons offense if, in a public place, and with purpose to offend the sensibilities of a hearer or in reckless disregard of the probability of so doing, he addresses unreasonably loud and offensively coarse or abusive language, given the circumstances of the person present and the setting of the utterance, to any person present.
While there is a bit of legalese used in 2C33-2, disorderly conduct is broadly worded to cover lots of different circumstances. The case of the 20-year-old Plainsboro man discussed above appears to be a clear case of “improper behavior.” He was hosting a party, which most likely caused annoyance to neighbors; and more importantly, the intoxicated girl who was passed out in the street demonstrates that the host created a hazardous condition at his party. Further, with regard to “offensive language,” cursing loudly in public would fall under that part of the statute.
Defenses to Disorderly Conduct. Given the wording of the statute, defenses around disorderly conduct tend to center around the purpose of the conduct at issue. For example, if someone can demonstrate that his or her purpose in doing something was not to “cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm” then it is possible the prosecution would be unable to prove that element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Similarly, if someone used offensive language, a possible defense could be that he or she was not in public, or had a purpose other than to “offend the sensibilities” of those who could hear. Of course, you should consult an attorney to understand the best defenses to use in any particular case.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct. Disorderly conduct is a petty disorderly persons offense. That means you will face penalties that include up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $500 fine in Plainsboro Municipal Court. You could also be sentenced to community service and/or probation. A collateral consequence of a conviction is a criminal record that will follow you for years.
Plainsboro Disorderly Conduct Attorney
Lapses in judgment happen but the key is to make sure they do not mushroom into something life changing. To minimize the consequence of a disorderly conduct charge, you should contact a lawyer to learn what legal options are available to you. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are here to help you in this capacity. We know our way around the Plainsboro Municipal Court, having successfully handled many cases over the last twenty years. Let the lawyers on the staff assist you in having your disorderly conduct charge downgraded or dismissed. Call us for a free initial consultation with an attorney at 732-246-7126.