Norfolk Disorderly Conduct Lawyer

Perhaps you were out with some friends, trying to have a good time when you had an encounter with the police. One thing led to another, and now you have a court date related to a disorderly conduct charge. Your freedom is at risk, and you may face jail time and have to pay hefty fines.

If you are at risk for a conviction, you should speak with a skilled defense attorney. There may be elements of the act or law involved of which you are unaware. When your freedom is at risk, knowledge is your best defense. Schedule an appointment with a Norfolk disorderly conduct lawyer who will be able to explain the applicable statutes and what you can expect throughout the legal process. You may be able to get the charge dismissed, plead to a lesser offense, or assert a defense.

Disorderly Conduct Law in Norfolk

There are three sections to the statute dealing with disorderly conduct in public places, Code of Virginia §18.2-415. The following are elements of this offense:

  • An intent to cause, or recklessly creating a risk of: public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm, and
  • Being in a public place and engaging in acts which may lead to violence, or
  • Being drunk at specific events or situations and causing a disruption.

Disorderly Conduct in a Public Place

If a person is in a public building or place, on public transportation or a public street or highway, that person may not engage in any conduct which could lead to violence.

 Disorderly Conduct at School Events

A person may not disrupt school events on willfully or while drunk. A person may also not engage in behavior which may lead to violence.

Disorderly Conduct at Other Public Events

A person may not disrupt events willfully or while intoxicated. It does not matter if the person is drunk willfully or not. A person may not disrupt or engage in activities which may incite violence at the following events:

  • Funerals,
  • Memorial services,
  • Government meetings,
  • Schools,
  • Literary society meetings, or
  • Places of worship.

Definition of Disorderly Conduct

People have a First Amendment right to freedom of speech. Police may not use the things a person says as grounds to determine guilt. The behavior must be the basis of an arrest. If the police believe that a person may be a danger to the officer or the public, the police may arrest that person.

Penalties for a Disorderly Conduct Conviction

A person in charge of an area where the alleged conduct occurs may eject the person causing a disturbance. The same law appears in the Norfolk Code of Ordinances §54-31.

Disorderly conduct is a Class 1 misdemeanor. The court may send a person convicted to jail for up to one year and order that person to pay a fine of up to $2,500. It is best to speak to a knowledgeable attorney to help build a defense to avoid a conviction.

Get Help from a Norfolk Disorderly Conduct Attorney Today

If the police have arrested you for violating some act in public, you must ensure that your rights are protected. You have the right to consult with an attorney, and you may learn more about your rights from that lawyer. It is vital to seek out a Norfolk disorderly conduct lawyer immediately if you have been charged or are at risk of being charged.

Time is often a factor in criminal matters. Schedule a meeting today to ensure that your representative can give you the best advice available in your circumstances.