Lumberton NJ Disorderly Conduct Lawyer
Criminal Defense Attorney in Burlington County, New Jersey
The term “disorderly conduct” is often associated with what is described as “drunk and disorderly” behavior. This association can be applicable, as disorderly conduct charges often arise in environments where alcohol is being consumed. For example, at stadiums, restaurants, bars, concerts, and in other public places where people gather, confrontations can occur, arguments can escalate, and those allegedly involved can be charged with disorderly conduct. At times, several individuals are arrested in connection with an incident that they were not directly involved in. In other cases, someone charged with disorderly conduct was simply defending him or herself while being attacked or threatened by someone else. Due to the serious penalties associated with a conviction for disorderly conduct, including a charge on your criminal record and potential jail time, it is essential to find an experienced criminal defense attorney who can mount a compelling case on your behalf.
Leonard Biddison is a seasoned criminal defense attorney with over 20 years of experience defending clients facing criminal charges in Southern New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Having successfully represented clients charged with crimes ranging from simple assault to homicide, Mr. Biddison has earned a reputation for unwavering advocacy through every stage of the legal process. One former client described his experience with Mr. Biddison this way:
“I knew that I had made the best choice for me the very first time I met Mr. Biddison. He made me feel comfortable during a very difficult time in my life. Mr. Biddison acted very quickly with my case and talked with me about every aspect of it. His attention to detail and his consistent communication with me was outstanding! Mr. Biddison left no stone unturned and did everything in his power to get me the best result for my case.” – Former Client
To read more of Mr. Biddison’s client reviews, access his profile on Avvo.com. You can also contact his offices at 856-427-6888 for immediate assistance and a cost-free consultation.
Disorderly Conduct Attorney in Mount Laurel NJ
New Jersey law describes the charge of disorderly conduct in section N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2 of the New Jersey Criminal Code. With regard to disorderly conduct, the statute provides the following:
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:
(1) Engages in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior; or
(2) 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.
Examining NJ Disorderly Conduct Law
As outlined above, there are two distinct categories that may constitute disorderly conduct: improper behavior and offensive language. Notice, the terms used in this statute are highly subjective. Consider the application of the word “improper” or “offensive,” and it is easy to see that these descriptions can vary greatly depending on the observer. Due to the ambiguity of the legal language, there are many potential arguments against disorderly conduct charges, and it is important that your attorney thoroughly investigates the circumstances of your specific case in order to identify potential defense strategies. For example, it is possible that a law enforcement officer arrived on the scene after an incident has already escalated. As such, he or she may only have been exposed to a person’s reaction to someone else’s behavior. In other words, what an officer perceives as improper behavior may actually constitute self-defense.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct in New Jersey
Disorderly conduct is classified as a petty disorderly persons offense in New Jersey, which is essentially the lowest-level criminal offense. A conviction for disorderly conduct may result in a sentence to serve up to 3 months in the county jail, a maximum fine of $500, and a charge on the defendant’s criminal record. Unfortunately, criminal charges on your record can serve as a hindrance when you are pursuing employment or educational opportunities. In cases involving disorderly conduct, an outright dismissal is always the best option. However, if there is insufficient evidence to support an outright dismissal, a skilled attorney can argue to have your criminal charges downgraded to a municipal ordinance violation. In New Jersey, a municipal ordinance violation is similar to a ticket for an offense such as littering. These cases can be resolved through payment of a fine and will not result in a criminal charge on your record.
Contact a Mt. Holly NJ Disorderly Conduct Defense Lawyer for a Free Consultation
If you or someone you love has been charged with disorderly conduct in Burlington County or elsewhere in South Jersey, begin building your best defense immediately. Contact the Law Offices of Leonard Biddison at 856-427-6888 for additional information and a cost-free consultation.