Let’s set aside the arguments about Columbus Day…is it a Valid Holiday? Did he really Discovery America? On Purpose? Who Knows. Regardless of the answers to the foregoing questions, the essential question is this: Will you enjoy this Three Day Weekend? Absolutely! I mean, who doesn’t enjoy a long weekend?
We agree. Enjoy the long weekend, but please do so responsibly: Don’t Drink and Drive!
Cops will be out looking to keep our streets safe this long weekend. Please don’t overdue it this weekend and compound it with a stupid decision by getting behind the wheel of a car. Order an Uber, Lyft, Taxi or just stay in and enjoy your drinks at home. (If you are 21!)
If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-532-6805, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.
Anyone who has been around a college campus, college bars and houses around 2 am on a weekend can attest to the fact that its not uncommon to see college aged kids who have clearly had too much to drink. They may be weaving down the sidewalk, throwing up, or just generally being loud and obnoxious. It is also not uncommon to see those same inebriated people get arrested for public intoxication a few moments later.
Though the severity of the offense and the penalty for a conviction of public intoxication may vary depending on the state, there are basic principles behind the offense. Generally speaking, and this may seem obvious from the title, to convict you of public intoxication the government must prove that you were both 1. in public, and 2. clearly intoxicated. What constitutes a public place for purpose of the statute generally depends on its openness to the public. For example, a private club that is closed to the public, such as one that requires membership, won’t be considered a public place for purpose of the statute. Also some states have specific requirements that the intoxicated person must be a nuisance to the public. That requires other people being around, and that the intoxicated persons behavior interfere in some way with their enjoyment of the public space.
As for intoxication, there is no specific level of intoxication such as a BAC level that determines whether someone is per se intoxicated. These statutes are usually not limited to just alcohol, as being under the influence of drugs, with or without alcohol, will satisfy the intoxicated prong of the statute as well. Whether someone is intoxicated is generally a judgment of reasonableness. For the most part, you know it when you see it. And as stated above, some states public intoxication statutes require that the intoxicated person be a nuisance to others, so if the behavior is nothing that would bother the other people there, in those states a public intoxication charge would be improper.
If you or a loved one has been charged with public intoxication, consult with an attorney. An experienced attorney can help fight the charges, get them dismissed, or pursue alternative remedies that may avoid a conviction altogether. Attorney Frank Walker is a lawyer you can trust to fight for you. With offices in Pittsburgh, PA and Morgantown, WV, Attorney Walker has years of experience providing zealous representation to college students and the general public. Call 412-532-6805 to reach the Pittsburgh office or (304) 712-2089 for the office in Morgantown. Call today!
If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at412-532-6805,24 hours a day, 7 days a weekfor aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.
Sometimes a night of drinking can go a little too far, and get a little too loud and unruly. Once cops become involved, criminal charges can be quick to follow. Two of the most common, and misunderstood, charges levied in these situations are charges of Public Drunkenness and Disorderly Conduct.
Public drunkenness requires that a person be manifestly under the influence of alcohol. The public drunkenness statute also applies to intoxication caused by controlled substances. However, this statute is not intended to outlaw having a few drinks and walking home. Just having alcohol on your breath or a slight stagger in your gait should not be enough to end with criminal charges. On the other hand, being loud and falling down drunk on a city sidewalk is most likely going to end with a public drunkenness charge.
Charges of public drunkenness often go hand in hand with disorderly conduct charges. However, there are significant differences. The first and most obvious, is that a disorderly conduct charge has no requirement of intoxication. The disorderly conduct charge requires that the offender cause or intend to cause substantial harm or serious inconvenience. This can be accomplished by disturbing the peace through the screaming of loud obscenities or reckless conduct that causes a serious obstruction to the public.
Just drinking or being loud aren’t in and of themselves crimes worthy of punishment. However, under the wrong circumstances, you may find yourself facing one of these widely used, and some would say overused, charges. The burden is on the Commonwealth to prove the elements of these charges. Merely being present on the scene, or having a few drinks, or being in a disagreement with someone, is not enough to sustain a legitimate conviction. However, as the saying goes, you can beat the rap but you can’t beat the ride. Meaning that although you may ultimately prevail in a court of law, certain behaviors may still land you in cuffs awaiting a summary trial hearing or a preliminary hearing.
However, just because you’ve been charged with an offense, doesn’t mean you’re guilty. Handled the wrong way, a charge for public drunkenness or disorderly conduct may interfere with your work life and end up on background checks for years to come. If you are facing charges of public drunkenness or disorderly conduct after a night out, don’t just plead guilty! Retain Attorney Frank Walker today! With the help of Frank Walker Law, you can potentially get the charges dismissed or reach alternative agreements in lieu of a conviction. And if you’ve been convicted of a public drunkenness or disorderly conduct charge, Attorney Walker can help get the charges expunged and your record wiped clean.
If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident in WVorPA, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at412-532-6805,24 hours a day, 7 days a weekfor aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation following a serious accident or injury.