Dallas disorderly conduct offenses are generally classified as offenses against the public order and decency. A conviction for disorderly conduct can result in serious punishments, including jail time, fines, a criminal record, and/or community service.
It is important to remember that an arrest for disorderly conduct does not have to result in a conviction and subsequent criminal record. The state prosecutor must prove the alleged offender committed every element to the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. This is a very difficult burden to meet, and if the judge or jury has any doubt, the charges can be reduced or even dismissed. Therefore, it is crucial to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Dallas who can help you identify your best legal strategy for your unique situation.
Dallas Disorderly Conduct Attorney
If you have been charged with disorderly conduct in Dallas, or any of the surrounding areas in Texas, including Garland, Irving, Grand Prairie, Denton, Plano, McKinney, Fort Worth, Arlington, Mesquite, Carrolton, Richardson, Lewisville or Frisco, contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy.
Richard McConathy is a knowledgeable in all areas of Texas’ violent crime statutes and laws and will make every effort to fight the allegations against you. Call Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy at (972) 233-5700 about your alleged disorderly conduct offense.
Dallas Disorderly Conduct
According to Tex. Penal Code § 42.01, an individual can be charged with disorderly conduct if they intentionally or knowingly:
- Use abusive, indecent, profane or vulgar language in a public place and the language alone can cause an immediate breach of peace. These types of words can include cursing, cuss words or racial slurs.
- Make an offensive gesture or display in a public place and the gesture alone can cause an immediate breach of the peace. These types of gestures can include flipping the bird or sexually suggestive actions.
- Create a noxious and unreasonable odor in a public place through the use of some type of chemicals.
- Abuse or threaten a person in a public place that is obviously offensive.
- Make unreasonable noise in a public place or in or near a private residence the alleged offender has no right to occupy. This offense is most commonly associated with loud parties or homes where music is played loudly.
- Fight with another person in a public place.
- Discharge a firearm in a public place other than a public road or sport shooting range.
- Display a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in order to create alarm.
- Discharge a firearm on or across a public road.
- Recklessly expose sex organs, genitals or anus in a public place without regard for whether another person who is present might be offended or alarmed. This type of act involves mooning another person.
- Enters another person’s property and looks into the dwelling through any window or opening for a lewd and unlawful purpose. An individual who commits this act may be known as a “peeping Tom.”
- While on hotel premises, looks into a guest room that is not their own through a window or other opening in the room for a lewd and unlawful purpose.
- While on the premises of a public place, looks into an area, such as a restroom, changing room, dressing room, or shower stall that is designed for privacy for a lewd and unlawful purpose.
Under Texas law, noise is considered unreasonable if the level exceeds 85 decibels after the alleged offender has already been warned to turn down the noise level from a law enforcement officer.
Offenses Similar to Disorderly Conduct in Dallas
Texas law provides for many offenses similar to disorderly conduct in Chapter 42 of the Texas Penal Code, which an individual can be charged with instead of or in addition to disorderly conduct. These offenses are as follows:
- Riot – Tex. Penal Code § 42.02 – This offense can occur if seven or more persons engage in conduct that creates a danger for injury or damage to property.
- Harassment – Tex. Penal Code § 42.07 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they do any act with the intent to harm, annoy, alarm, torment, embarrass or abuse another person.
- Silent or Abusive Calls to 911 – Tex. Penal Code § 42.061 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they make a phone call to 911 that is not an emergency and remain silent or make abusive or harassing statements.
- False Alarm or Report – Tex. Penal Code § 42.06 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they initiate, communicate or circulate a report of a past, present or future bombing, fire or offense they know is false or baseless.
- Funeral Service Disruption – Tex. Penal Code § 42.055 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they engage in picketing a funeral service one hour before or after or during the service.
- Disruption of Meetings or Processions – Tex. Penal Code § 42.05 – an individual can be charged with this offense if they prevent or disrupt any lawful meeting, procession or gathering through physical action or verbal utterance.
- Obstructing a Highway or Other Passageway – Tex. Penal Code § 42.03 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they obstruct a highway, street, sidewalk, elevator, aisle, hallway, entrance, exit, or any other place the public has access or that is used for the passage of vehicles or persons.
- Stalking – Tex. Penal Code § 42.072 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they knowingly engage in certain types of conduct that is specifically directed at a certain person.
- Dog Fighting – Tex. Penal Code § 42.10 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they intentionally and knowingly cause a dog to fight with another dog or participate in dog fighting.
- Destruction of Flag – Tex. Penal Code § 42.11 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they intentionally and knowingly damage, deface, mutilate or burn the United States flag or the State of Texas flag.
- Cruelty to Animals – Tex. Penal Code § 42.09 and 42.092 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they knowingly, intentionally or recklessly engage in certain acts, such as torture or abandon, to a domestic animal or livestock.
- Use of Laser Pointers – Tex. Penal Code § 42.13 – An individual can be charged with this offense if they knowingly direct a light from a laser pointer at a law enforcement officer.
Disorderly Conduct Penalties in Dallas
Chapter 12 of the Texas Penal Code defines the penalties for disorderly conduct offenses in Dallas. The penalties for a disorderly conduct conviction are as follows:
Disorderly conduct offenses are generally punishable as a Class C misdemeanor offense, which can result in a fine up to $500.
An individual who has been charged with a disorderly conduct offense of discharging a firearm in a public place or displaying a firearm in a public place in order to calculate alarm can be convicted of a Class B misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine not more than $2,000.
Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy | Fort Worth Disorderly Conduct Attorney
Contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today for a consultation about your allegations of disorderly conduct in Dallas County in Texas. Richard McConathy is a knowledgeable Dallas violent crimes attorney who will make every effort to help you avoid the penalties and repercussions to your alleged disorderly conduct offense.
Fill out an online form or call (972) 233-5700 today for a consultation about your disorderly conduct charges throughout Dallas County in Texas and the surrounding counties of Denton County, Collin County and Tarrant County.