Springfield NJ Disorderly Conduct Attorney
Disorderly Conduct Charge in Springfield Township New Jersey
Did the Springfield Police Department catch you creating a scene in public? Did a little too much drinking lead to a prank that went too far? Those types of circumstances can lead to a disorderly conduct charge in Springfield New Jersey. While you may think a charge for disorderly conduct sounds relatively minor, the offense could actually land you in jail for up to 30 days. So, before you head to Springfield Municipal Court to answer to the charge, you would be wise to retain the services of a knowledgeable attorney. We are the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall and our attorneys can help you know what options you have to possibly get your disorderly conduct case downgraded or dismissed. The criminal defense lawyers on our team have many years of experience representing clients in Springfield and in municipalities throughout Union County. Even if you are not sure whether you want to hire a lawyer, you should still give us a call because initial consultations are absolutely free. Call our Union Township office today at 908-272-1700 to speak to an attorney immediately about your disorderly conduct case in Springfield NJ.
Springfield NJ Disorderly Conduct Offense
According to New Jersey statute N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2, a Springfield NJ disorderly conduct offense can arise in two different ways – improper behavior and offensive language. If you are charged with disorderly conduct due to improper behavior, the prosecution must prove that you “engaged in fighting or threatening, or engaged in violent or tumultuous behavior,” or that you “created a hazardous or physically dangerous condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose.” In addition, the prosecution must prove your purpose in engaging in the improper behavior was to “cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly create a risk thereof.”
A good criminal attorney, such as those at the Marshall Defense Firm, may be able to defend against your Springfield disorderly conduct offense by challenging those elements. For example, your attorney could demonstrate that the purpose of your behavior was not to cause “alarm or annoyance.” Thus, failure of the prosecution to prove every element means that the charge must be dismissed.
If you are charged with disorderly conduct due to use of offensive language, the Springfield municipal prosecutor must prove that you: (i) were in a public place; (ii) spoke in a manner that was unreasonably loud, and in offensively coarse or abusive language; and (iii) had the purpose to offend the sensibilities of the hearer, or recklessly disregard the chance of doing so.
As with improper behavior, an aggressive criminal defense attorney can show that the prosecution is unable to prove one of the required elements. Your attorney can show that your language was not unreasonably loud or offensive, or that there was no chance that others could hear you.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct. Disorderly conduct is considered a petty disorderly persons offense, which is a lesser form of a disorderly persons offense in New Jersey. Petty disorderly persons offense are handled in Springfield Municipal Court and result in up to 30 days in jail, up to a $500 fine, and possible community service and/or probation.
Springfield Disorderly Conduct Defense Lawyer
It is true that a disorderly conduct charge is not the most serious offense although failure to avoid a conviction results in consequences that can alter the path of your life. That said, whenever jail time is a possibility, it makes sense to have an experienced Sprinfield NJ criminal lawyer by your side to help you. We at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall know our way around Springfield Municipal Court with attorneys who have been defending charges in the jurisdiction for decades. An attorney on our staff can help you minimize the impact the charge will have on your pocketbook and your life. Call our Union Township office today at 908-272-1700 for a free consultation with one of our lawyers.