Disorderly conduct is a very common offense that most frequently occurs as a result of arrests and charges in “party towns” that include “Jersey Shore” towns and/or a vibrant nightlife scene. In other parts of New Jersey, cities such as Hoboken and New Brunswick, which is home to Rutgers University, are rife with Disorderly Conduct charges. In Ocean County, the vibrant boardwalk and night life in Seaside Park, Seaside Heights, Point Pleasant Boro, Lavallette, Long Beach Island, and Point Pleasant Beach are lively towns in which these charges occur most often. A great deal of disorderly conduct charges are also written in Toms River, Mantaloking, Lakewood, Lavallette, Jackson, Beach Haven, Ship Bottom, and Brick. As you might imagine, these offenses are usually alcohol-related and can be charged as a result of public intoxication, bar fights, and yelling or causing a scene on the street. Disorderly conduct charges are often magnified by the fact that minors are involved, increasing the risk of “companion charges” such as supplying alcohol to minors, public intoxication, possession of a fake ID, and other “Jersey Shore Crimes”.
Need a Lawyer for a Disorderly Conduct Charge in Manchester NJ?
If convicted of disorderly conduct, it will likely remain on your permanent record. This can negatively impact employment and educational opportunities. Short term consequences are severe and include mandatory probation, community service, and even incarceration in the county jail. At Proetta & Oliver, our Ocean County criminal defense attorneys represent clients who have been charged with disorderly conduct throughout Ocean County, including in Beachwood, Waretown, Manahawkin, Forked River, Ocean Gate, Little Egg Harbor, and Tuckerton. Our lawyers have comprehensive experience involving thousands of criminal and municipal court charges including a wide assortment of disorderly conduct cases. If you or your loved one has been arrested and subsequently charged with disorderly conduct at the Jersey Shore, then it is in your best interest to hire an experienced disorderly conduct lawyer to defend your interests and protect your rights. To discuss your case in greater detail, contact our Point Pleasant office at (848) 238-2100 for a free initial consultation.
Facing a Disorderly Conduct Charge at the Jersey Shore?
The Disorderly Conduct law is a statute that is intentionally designed to be broad sweeping. It includes a wide array of prohibited acts. Please see the New Jersey statute N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2 below in pertinent part for your reading convenience:
a. 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.
b. 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.
What Happens if You are Convicted of Disorderly Conduct in NJ?
In order to be convicted of disorderly conduct in New Jersey, the State need only prove that you acted with the purpose to cause annoyance, public inconvenience, or alarm. This can be manifested through physical acts or words. Disorderly conduct is considered a petty disorderly persons offense (petty misdemeanor). As such, if convicted, you can be sentenced for up to 30 days in county jail, fined up to $500 and be saddled with a criminal record. Anyone convicted of disorderly conduct in New Jersey must wait at least three years before they could petition the court to expunge their criminal record. It has been the experience of our attorneys to handle various “companion” charges when dealing with disorderly conduct. These include Harassment, Simple Assault, Resisting Arrest, or Criminal Trespass.
Do I have to go to Court for a Disorderly Conduct Offense in NJ?
Yes, court is mandatory for anyone charged with a disorderly conduct charge. As touched upon above, disorderly conduct is considered a petty disorderly persons offense. Although this is the lowest level crime in New Jersey, it is still considered a misdemeanor offense. The local municipal court in the township where the offense occurred the court who retains original jurisdiction over the charges. So, for example, if a Defendant is arrested and charged with disorderly conduct in Stafford Township, there charges will be sent to the Stafford Municipal Court for disposition. However, if the Defendant is also charged with an indictable offense like aggravated assault, burglary, assault with a deadly weapon or eluding then their entire case, including the disorderly conduct charge must be transferred to the Ocean County Superior Court for disposition.
Contact Point Pleasant NJ Disorderly Conduct Lawyers for a Free Consultation
At Proetta & Oliver, our Ocean County criminal defense lawyers take protecting our clients’ legal rights very seriously. If you hire us, you can feel confident that you have the representation of an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows the court system. We pride ourselves on keeping our clients informed and “in the loop” throughout the entire process. If you would like to speak with a Jersey Shore disorderly conduct lawyer during an initial consultation contact our office in Toms River at (848) 238-2100. We are available 24/7.
Our phones are answered 24 hours a day. We are available weekdays during business hours. We also meet with clients on evenings and weekends by request. All major credit cards are accepted.