New Canaan Disorderly Conduct Court Process
Depending on the type of “Disorderly Conduct” you stand accused of, you may go through different court proceedings with varying resolutions at the end of them. There is no substitute for a seasoned defense attorney’s guidance when making sense of the New Canaan court process for these kinds of charges. Speak to our team at Mark Sherman Law to learn more about your legal rights and responsibilities.
What Happens Immediately After a Disorderly Conduct Arrest?
Disorderly conduct is a fairly unique criminal offense in Connecticut because police officers technically have total leeway to decide what does and does not count as criminally actionable “Disorderly Conduct.” The relevant state statute does define several specific actions that qualify as Disorderly Conduct. However, it also allows law enforcement officers to arrest anyone they decide has annoyed or interfered with another person “by offensive or Disorderly Conduct,” regardless of whether that other person agrees with their assessment of the situation.
Because of this, the initial processing for a Disorderly Conduct charge usually happens at the scene of the alleged offense. The responding officer may issue a court summons to the arrested person without taking them into custody. When someone is taken into custody over an alleged Disorderly Conduct offense, they can technically be held there until their case concludes, but it is much more common for them to be released on what’s known as “personal recognizance” or after paying a bond. Even this early in the court process, support from capable legal counsel can ensure that things go as smoothly as possible and that a defendant does not say or do something to inadvertently harm their defense.
Arraignment for Disorderly Conduct Charges
For a standard Disorderly Conduct charge, the arraignment will typically proceed a few days or sometimes even weeks after the initial arrest. However, when someone is arrested for a domestic violence Disorderly Conduct offense in Connecticut, they will almost always be arraigned on the next business day to protect family and household members from possible further harm. They will also be required to meet with a member of the court’s Family Relations Office prior to their hearing.
Arraignment for a domestic violence Disorderly Conduct offense will also often involve the court issuing some kind of protective order against the defendant. The terms of this order could range from a general prohibition on any further Disorderly Conduct to harsh restrictions on where they can go and whom they can have contact with. Any violation of such a protective order—even a completely accidental one—can be prosecuted as a felony criminal offense.
Additional Steps Before Trial
Sometimes, the court process for a Disorderly Conduct charge in New Canaan can end shortly after arraignment, as there are alternative resolutions to some cases which may not involve prosecution. For example, a first-time domestic violence Disorderly Conduct offender may be eligible to participate in the Family Violence Education Program and—upon successful completion—have their charge dropped and erased from public records. In other situations, it may be possible to negotiate for the prosecutor to “nolle” the case, meaning that they agree not to prosecute it and may ultimately drop the charges after 13 months have passed.
Seek Help from a New Canaan Attorney Regarding the Disorderly Conduct Court Process
Disorderly Conduct offenses are not as serious as many other criminal charges in Connecticut, but they can still be immensely disruptive to your personal and professional life.
When you need help dealing with or have questions about the New Canaan Disorderly Conduct court process, contact the Law Offices of Mark Sherman, and click here to read what our past clients have said about working with us.