According to Kansas Code §21-6203, disorderly conduct can be defined as any act that knowingly angers, alarms or disturbs another person, provokes an assault or breaches the public peace. This could include a) brawling or fighting in public, b) disturbing a meeting, procession or assembly, c) using "fighting words" or d) engaging in noisy conduct that subsequently arouses alarm, anger or resentment. Since the definition of this crime is so broad, however, there are a number of unique circumstances that could result in disorderly conduct charges. In fact, this is one of the most highly prosecuted offenses in the country.
As a citizen of the United States, you are afforded certain Constitutional rights—with the most important being the freedom of speech. This means that you cannot be charged with a crime that would infringe upon these rights. When it comes to disorderly conduct, however, the lines are often blurred. If you were arrested for using offensive language in public, for example, it would be up to the prosecution to prove that your language had risen to the level of "fighting words"—as anything less would be protected under your First Amendment rights. In the United States Supreme Court case, Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, the fighting words doctrine was very clearly articulated.
It was decided that "fighting words" could be defined as any language that is violent in nature and/or used to incite an immediate breach of peace. Many people assume that this would encompass all hurtful or insulting utterances, but it is only a crime to speak out in public if it is done in a manner that exceeds this burden of proof. For this reason, it is important for anyone who has been charged with disorderly conduct to understand the scope of their First Amendment protections. By contacting our Olathe criminal attorney from Garretson & Toth, LLC immediately after an arrest, one can ensure that their rights will be upheld and that they are given a fair trial.
In the state of Kansas, disorderly conduct is considered to be a Class C misdemeanor. If convicted of this crime, one could expect to face up to one month in jail and costly fines. If the circumstances of the incident were particularly violent, however, the severity of the charges could be increased to assault and/or battery—which would typically result in much stiffer penalties. For this reason, it is crucial that you seek the help of an Olathe criminal defense lawyer from our firm if you are currently facing charges for disorderly conduct. Our legal team may be able to help you avoid time behind bars, so there is no reason why you should wait any longer to enlist the professional help that you will need. Contact our office today for a free initial consultation.
If you or someone you love has been charged with disorderly conduct, you could be facing up to 30 days in jail. For this reason, we encourage you to contact an Olathe criminal attorney at our firm as soon as possible. Not only can we dedicate more than 45 years of experience to your case, but it won't cost you a thing to find out if we can help.
Your initial consultation is free when you contact our firm at (913) 971-0296, so we ask that you give us a call immediately. If you would prefer to contact us online, you can also contact us directly from our website. Either way you choose to get in touch, we look forward to hearing from you soon.