Disorderly Conduct and Public Intoxication

Excessive use of alcohol or drugs plays a significant role in the commission of serious crimes, including – an estimated 32 percent of all murders; more than 50% of all sexual assaults; 40-60% of all domestic abuse situations; 30-40% of all suicide attempts; and 80% of all child abuse cases. If you are facing charges stemming from the use of alcohol or drugs, such as disorderly conduct or public intoxication, you need a St. Louis criminal defense attorney on your side to protect your rights and your future.

Call Combs Waterkotte today at (314) 900-HELP or contact us online for a free consultation. While perhaps not as severe as DUI/DWI or drug possession charges, at least on their own, disorderly conduct and public intoxication do carry the possibility of heavy fines and a significant impact to your record. Our criminal defense team has years of experience successfully defending our clients. Here, we’ll discuss the key components of disorderly conduct and public intoxication.

Disorderly Conduct and Public Intoxication in St. Louis and Missouri

Disorderly conduct, or what is called a “peace disturbance” in Missouri Revised Statutes § 574.010, occurs when a person:

  • Unreasonably and knowingly disturbs or alarms another person or persons by:
    • Loud noise
    • Offensive language addressed in a face-to-face manner to a specific individual and uttered under circumstances which are likely to produce an immediate violent response from a recipient
    • Threatening to commit a felonious act against any person under circumstances which are likely to cause a reasonable person to fear that such threat may be carried out
    • Fighting
    • Creating a noxious and offensive odor
  • Is in a public place or on private property of another without consent and purposely causes inconvenience to another person or persons by unreasonably and physically obstructing:
    • Vehicular or pedestrian traffic
    • The free ingress or egress to or from a public or private place

While a disorderly conduct charge frequently comes about due to the use of alcohol or drugs, it doesn’t require it. Disorderly conduct is a class B misdemeanor, which could bring up to 6 months in county jail and a fine as much as $1,000. If you have been arrested or are facing disorderly conduct charges, call Combs Waterkotte right away at (314) 900-HELP or contact us online.

Public Intoxication: Commonly Called the Offense of Drunkenness or Drinking in a Prohibited Place in Missouri

Missouri law does not specifically prohibit public intoxication, or even consuming alcohol in public. However, the offense of drunkenness or drinking in a prohibited place, as defined in R.S.M.O. § 574.075, is also a class B misdemeanor, and occurs when someone “enters any schoolhouse or church house in which there is an assemblage of people, met for a lawful purpose, or any courthouse, in an intoxicated and disorderly condition, or drinks or offers to drink any intoxicating liquors in the presence of such assembly of people, or in any courthouse.”

So, all things being equal, if you are publicly intoxicated in St. Louis or elsewhere throughout Missouri – anywhere other than the aforementioned schoolhouse, church house, or courthouse – and commit no other crime, you are not violating the law. If you have been arrested on such a charge, call Combs Waterkotte now at (314) 900-HELP or reach out to one of our criminal defense lawyers online.

Disorderly Conduct and Public Intoxication | Combs Waterkotte

If you or a loved one are facing disorderly conduct or public intoxication (drunkenness or drinking in a prohibited place) charges, you have a right to fight the charges in court with help from a lawyer. While these charges typically don’t carry lengthy sentences or large fines, the damage to your reputation can prove irreparable. Our legal team will:

  • Whether you, given the specifics facts of your case, actually violated St. Louis or Missouri law
  • Whether the arresting authorities violated constitutional or procedural rights in the course of the investigation and/or arrest
  • Whether a viable defense to the violation can be raised
  • What plea bargain options could help you reduce penalties or even avoid a conviction altogether

These are just examples of things our lawyers can provide, and are dependent on the particulars of your case. You deserve the best possible legal representation. Call a Combs Waterkotte criminal defense attorney today at (314) 900-HELP or contact us online for a free, no-obligation case review.