Public Intoxication

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Public Intoxication

The charges of public intoxication, often called “drunk and disorderly”, are legal charges alleging that a person is visibly drunk or under the influence of drugs in public. It is generally a criminal offense under national and local laws.

There are public intoxication laws to prevent people from disturbing others in public and to prevent people who seem incapable of keeping themselves from hurting themselves or hurting others.

Public Intoxication: Basic Elements of the Criminal Charge

By definition, a public intoxication charge usually has a number of elements, all of which must be met, including:

  • You appear or seem to be;
  • Drunk or intoxicated;
  • and you are in public.

Many states also require prosecutors to prove that you seem so out of control that you don’t appear to be able to take care of yourself, or that you present a threat to the safety of others.

If you come out of a bar or restaurant that looks pompous, noisy, behaving obscenely or swearing, chances are you will be arrested by the local police on public intoxication charges.

In many states, public intoxication crimes don’t even require you to be drunk to be convicted of the charge. You simply have to appear drunk or high on drugs, even if that’s not the case.

Your behavior and demeanor will be a key component of the charges.

Another condition of a public intoxication charge is that a person must be present in public. What makes a place public? Is it located on government owned property? Is it a private establishment where people congregate, such as a shopping center or a sports club, or is it your own private property and out of sight of your neighbors?

There isn’t any specific definition for a public place. Analyze the nature of the place, is it private or public where you got the public intoxication charge because it depends on the court whether it is a public intoxication case or not?

Public Intoxication: Defenses And Exceptions

If you are suspected of the public intoxication case, then you lawyer can raise legal defenses in your favor. Following are some defenses you can use to overcome your public intoxication charges:

You Are Not Drunk And Are Not Acting Drunk

A positive defense of being charged for drunk and disorderly is that you were not acting like a drunk person in public.You can also claim that your behavior was totally out of excitement as you and your friends won a sports contest. The burden of proving this defense remains on the person accused of the crime.

The place you were being caught at was not included in a crime of public intoxication.

There are a number of places where public intoxication is not considered as a crime. Drinking in public is not a crime in a few states like Montana, Nevada and Missouri. Milwaukee city lets its people get drunk in public but some cities from Wisconsin have strict rules about public drinking.

You are caught for public intoxication while you were in a not so public place.

Being accused of public drinking needs you to be in a public place. If you were not caught in public then that means an important part of crime for which you are being accused is missing. In your defense, you can also add that you were dragged into a public place by the police officers in order to make it a public intoxication case.

Your Legal Rights For Public Intoxication Cases:

If you or your family member is charged with public intoxication or drunk disorderly you can charge and defend your case in court.

If you or a loved one experienced are charged with being publicly intoxicated or drunk and disorderly, you may be able to defend and fight the charge in court.

It is necessary for you to contact the DUI or attorney of criminal defense to know how they can help you and your family.

Some legal factors of a public intoxication case include:

  • Whether you or your family have actually violated the state or city law of public intoxication or not.
  • Whether the police responsible for arresting you has followed the law or not.
  • Whether your behavior was or was not a criminal violation.

Contact a DUI attorney or a criminal defense lawyer may be able to help you in public intoxication or drunk and disorderly case.

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