Disorderly conduct charges may involve behavior that is threatening, disruptive, or that poses harm to persons in the nearby area. Most definitions of disorderly conduct would involve the flowing types of conduct:
- Engaging in fighting or violent/disruptive conduct
- Making an unreasonable amount of noise
- Refusing to obey legal orders involving public safety or hazards
- Disrupting emergency services
- Disrupting business or legal meetings
- Using language or gestures that are intended to provoke physical retaliation
These types of conduct can often result in criminal penalties for the offender. Most disorderly conduct charges result in a citation or in misdemeanor charges.
- Is conducted at an airport
- Is conducted during or near a funeral
- Involves a weapon (especially reckless handling of a deadly weapon)
For instance, if a person is in a crowded place and discharges a gun into the air, they could be found guilty of felony disorderly conduct. Another example is during a road rage incident, where the defendant waved a gun at another driver while on the road. In such cases, the felony charges may result even if no person was hurt. If the defendant points the gun directly at a person with the intent to intimidate them, the charges may escalate to aggravated assault charges.
Penalties may vary by state, but they usually involve a minimum of 1.5 years in prison, as well as some criminal fines. Prison sentences can increase depending on the seriousness of the threat. They can also increase if the person already has a prior disorderly conduct charge on their record.
Felony disorderly conduct can result in some serious criminal consequences. You may need to hire a qualified criminal law attorney if you need legal representation for any type of criminal matters. An attorney can provide you with legal advice for your situation, and can inform you of what types of options you might have. In many cases it’s possible to have charges reduced or obtain alternative sentencing options.