Disorderly conduct, also called “disturbing the peace,” is a charge that can apply to a wide variety of acts. Handling a firearm recklessly, fighting, causing commotion in a business, and making an unreasonable amount of noise can all qualify.
Usually, disorderly conduct charges result from domestic situations where people get into an argument, or in nightlife scenarios where people are drinking and cause a commotion. As you can see, it’s easy to end up with such a charge, even if you had no intention to cause a disturbance. Often, the police will arrest the people accused of disorderly conduct just for simplicity’s sake.
If you were charged with disorderly conduct in Mesa, it’s best to speak with a lawyer about your case. Having a criminal record can have serious consequences for your future, and a lawyer can help you protect your interests.
Disorderly Conduct Laws in Mesa
As mentioned, this charge can apply to a wide variety of actions, so it’s a very common charge. Among the behaviors that police in Mesa may view as disorderly conduct are trying to provoke another person with offensive language or cursing and acting in a way that disrupts the operation of a business.
Other examples include displaying a gun to intimidate or provoke someone, or disobeying officials when they direct you to leave an area, in addition to fighting or making a lot of noise. As you can see by this list, “disorderly conduct” is a vague term that can be (and is) applied to many situations.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct in Mesa
Disorderly conduct is often charged as a class 1 misdemeanor, which is the most serious misdemeanor you can receive. This charge may result in fines up to $2,500 and up to 6 months of incarceration. Typically, a disorderly conduct incident without aggravating factors won’t lead to a maximum sentence, but any conviction can lead to fines, probation, jail time, and even mandatory community service or counseling.
If the incident involved a dangerous weapon (such as a firearm), the charge will escalate to a class 6 felony. This charge would also carry penalties such as fines, probation, and up to a year in prison. A felony charge on your record can severely disrupt your life, making it harder to find jobs or places to live in the future. It’s imperative that you seek legal counsel if you’ve been accused of disorderly conduct.
Defenses for Disorderly Conduct in Mesa
There are a few different defense strategies that a disorderly conduct lawyer would potentially use for your case. They could assert that you were trying to protect someone from injury, or that you were accused even though someone else was really at fault for disorderly conduct. Your lawyer could defend you by showing that you were acting under intimidation, provocation, or threat, or that there was no evidence to prove you engaged in disorderly conduct.
In other situations, you may have been exercising free speech when you were accused of committing a crime. In some cases, people are charged with disorderly conduct when it their actions weren’t committed with an intention to cause a disturbance. By proving this, your lawyer could have your charges reduced or dismissed.
It’s important to work with a skilled criminal defense attorney who will conduct an investigation to determine whether or not your charge was justified. Once you give them more information about your case, they’ll support you through this process and do their best to pursue a favorable outcome for you.
JacksonWhite Law in Mesa, Arizona
JacksonWhite Law has been serving clients in the Mesa area since 1983. We offer a full range of legal assistance and have plenty of experience navigating cases just like yours with great success. As one of the biggest firms in the East Valley, we work to provide advanced, insightful legal solutions to families, businesses, and individuals throughout the state of Arizona.
From fines, to probation and jail time, being in legal trouble is no laughing matter. It could harm your opportunities in life and even make it harder to find a place to live. Speak with one of our skilled lawyers today to get answers to your questions and to protect your future.
JacksonWhite Mesa Office
Our Mesa office is on the northwest corner of W. Pepper and N. Center Street. You may park on Pepper or in the parking garage nearby.
The Mesa city court is located on the northwest corner of Pomeroy Street and 1st Avenue. You’ll find a public parking garage behind the building, which you can access from Pomeroy or Main Street.
Call the JacksonWhite Criminal Law team at (480) 467-4370 to discuss your case today.