You may have several questions about your legal options and the penalties you may face if you are charged with disorderly conduct in the Indianapolis area. The attorneys at Banks & Brower are here to help. We have a reputation of success thanks our experience and history: Our senior partners spent many years as prosecutors, so they have intimate knowledge of the prosecution process and how the state of Indiana builds criminal cases.
What is Disorderly Conduct?
“Disorderly conduct” and “disturbing the peace” are generally interchangeable terms describing one of the most common misdemeanors. Indiana law describes disorderly conduct as any disruptive or offensive public conduct that interferes with or limits the enjoyment of others in public spaces. This can include fighting in public, making excessive noise in public, or disrupting groups of people in public spaces. Public intoxication, or being under the influence of drugs or alcohol in public, often leads to a disorderly conduct charge in addition to the public intoxication charge.
Disorderly conduct is a Class B misdemeanor, but if conduct occurs in an airport or within 500 feet of a funeral, it may be charged as a Level 6 felony. This may be the lowest level of felony charge in Indiana, but it can still have carry severe consequences for the accused later in life. Felony charges can make it difficult or impossible to enter some colleges or certain lines of work. Employers tend to look unfavorably toward applicants with felony records. Any disorderly conduct in an airport or that interferes with airport business will lead to a class-six felony charge, as well as any disorderly conducted within 500 feet of a burial, funeral, or memorial service.
Penalties for Disorderly Conduct
Misdemeanor penalties are generally mild, and disorderly conduct falls under Class B misdemeanor classification. The offender’s conduct during the situation in question and effects of his or her disorderly conduct may amplify the sentence, which is typically up to 180 days in jail and fines up to $1,000 for a Class B misdemeanor. If the disorderly conduct qualifies as a level 6 felony, the penalty may be between 6 months and 2 and a 1/2 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. A person who engages in disorderly conduct while publicly intoxicated will likely face misdemeanor charges for both offenses.
Disorderly conduct is a very common charge on college campuses and areas populated with younger adults, and these charges can lead to serious consequences for a young person’s future. Public intoxication and disorderly conduct can lead to misdemeanor or felony charges that may put a student’s academic career in jeopardy, as well as compromise his or her chances for future employment.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
You may think you can argue your side of events without the help of an attorney, but attempting to represent your own interests in court is inadvisable, and often leads to a conviction. You need a reliable criminal defense attorney with a track record of successful cases when facing misdemeanor or felony charges for disorderly conduct in the Indianapolis area. After your arrest, do not speak to authorities unless it is to request the presence of your attorney. Anything you say can compromise your situation and increase the likelihood of a conviction.
The attorneys at Banks & Brower have years of experience handling all types of criminal cases in Indianapolis, and our firm is the highest-rated defense firm in the area. Instead of relying on a public defender who has little at stake in your case, reach out to our team to schedule a consultation. We will review the charges, analyze the case against you and let you know how we can help.