Under New Jersey Law, disorderly conduct is an extraordinarily broad charge that encompasses behavior ranging from physical altercations to offensive language. These charges are commonly issued during sporting events, concerts, and in bars or other public places where large numbers of people congregate and engage in festivities. Many times, disorderly conduct charges are accompanied by charges for other offenses such as resisting arrest or public intoxication. Although the charge itself may seem trivial, a conviction can result in a host of serious penalties, including fines, a jail sentence, and a charge on your criminal record. Often, the record of the arrest and conviction can serve as a hindrance when seeking future opportunities for employment, education, or other positions or activities. Unless otherwise resolved, a conviction will appear on a criminal background check for at least five years until you become eligible to remove it through the expungement process.
At The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our attorneys refuse to accept the aforementioned results without first pursuing every viable alternative. We are often able to have these charges downgraded to municipal ordinance violations, which are not considered criminal charges and are easily resolved through payment of a fine, similar to a ticket for littering. Due to our experience prosecuting these cases, we have achieved countless dismissals in disorderly conduct cases, allowing our clients to walk away without even a “slap on the wrist.” For a free consultation about your disorderly conduct case with a member of our skilled defense team, contact our offices at 908-722-1011. One of our attorneys is always standing by to assist you.
Disorderly Conduct Charges in New Jersey: N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2
According to section N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2 of the New Jersey Criminal Code, the law regarding disorderly conduct is as follows:
Improper behavior. A person is guilty of a petty disorderly persons offense, if with purpose to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly create a risk thereof he or she:
- Engages in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior; or
- 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 doing so, 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.
Contact our Clinton Township Disorderly Conduct Lawyers for Immediate Assistance
As outlined in the statute above, disorderly conduct is classified as a petty disorderly persons offense, punishable by a sentence to serve up to 90 days in the county jail, as well as a maximum fine of $500. In order to effectively prove this charge, the State must establish that you caused “a public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm” through the use of offensive language or engagement in violent or disruptive behavior. Importantly, they must prove that you intentionally engaged in this behavior or speech, knowing the disruption that it would cause. Our attorneys are well-versed in the law in this area and are adept at constructing arguments against these allegations. Contact our offices today for additional information.