Crimes against public order are violations that interfere with the normal operations of society. These crimes go against publicly shared values, norms, or customs.
A public order crime does not require an identifiable victim. Individuals can be charged with public order crimes if their conduct or acts are considered “harmful to society.” Public order crimes primarily focus on the offensive conduct.
What Are Some Examples of Crimes against Public Order?
The most common examples of crimes against public order are:
Public order crimes are based on societal norms, so the definition may vary depending on the community. In some jurisdiction, public order crimes may or may not include the following:
- Under-age sex
- Disrupting funeral services
- Pornography-related crimes
- Private recreational drug use
What Are the Legal Consequences of Public-Order Crimes?
Legal penalties for crimes against public order will also vary depending on the crime. Punishment is typically split into two categories:
- Lesser charges, like disorderly conduct, may only result in misdemeanor charges or a citation
- Offenders could pay a small monetary fine or serve short jail sentences
- Serious crimes, like drug crimes, can result in felony charges.
- Offenders could pay higher monetary fines or serve longer prison sentences.
- Repeat offenders could face harsher penalties and simple misdemeanor charges could increase to a felony.
Are There Any Defenses to Crimes against Public Order?
Most criminal defenses will apply to public order crimes. These can include:
*Defenses will not completely excuse a defendant, but it may help reduce the sentence or punishment.
Should I Get an Attorney?
Yes. Crimes against public order can result in strict legal consequences, even if there was no specific victim involved. An experienced criminal defense attorney can assist you during trial and help determine if any defenses are available in your case.