Westport Disorderly Conduct Arrests
If you were recently arrested for disorderly conduct in Westport, it is important that you understand why your arrest occurred and what you could do to contest it. Talking to a disorderly conduct lawyer could help clarify your legal options and put you on the right path towards a positive resolution to your case.
What Constitutes Disorderly Conduct in Westport?
The criminal offense of disorderly conduct is defined in Connecticut General Statutes (C.G.S.) §53a-182 as intending to cause “inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm” through offensive conduct, or through any of the following specific behaviors:
- Fighting or threatening someone else in public
- Making an unreasonable amount of noise
- Unlawfully disturbing a lawful assembly
- Impeding pedestrian or vehicle traffic
- Not complying with an official order to leave a public place, after congregating there with other people
- Observing someone without their knowledge or consent while trespassing on that person’s property, and under circumstances where the observed person should reasonably be able to expect privacy
According to this statute, this offense is a class C misdemeanor. Penalties upon conviction may include a $500 fine and a maximum of three months in jail. While sometimes disorderly conduct arrests in Westport occur after a lengthy investigation, they typically occur when a police officer responds to a 911 call and arrests one or more parties at the scene based on “probable cause” that those parties engaged in disorderly conduct.
Unfortunately, this means that circumstantial evidence and testimony from witnesses are often the only basis for an arrest, both of which may be unreliable evidence upon which to base a conviction. Furthermore, police officers in Westport are required to make arrests upon suspicion of disorderly conduct even if the alleged victim(s) does not want to press charges.
What Procedures Follow a Disorderly Conduct Arrest?
For many people arrested on disorderly conduct charges in Westport, the ensuing case against him generally proceeds without much delay and can usually end positively for the arrested party. Provided they retain a skilled criminal defense attorney, many disorderly conduct charges can be resolved without criminal penalties or any mark on the arrested party’s criminal record.
On the other hand, arrests that law enforcement classifies as domestic violence are a very different matter. People arrested for domestic violence disorderly conduct must attend an arraignment hearing in court the next business day, during which a judge will usually issue some sort of protective order against them.
Will DCF Become Involved?
A person arrested for domestic violence disorderly conduct may also have to deal with DCF investigations, loss of employment opportunities, and even removal from their home before they get their day in court. In light of these potential consequences, it is especially important to retain legal counsel if there is any suspicion of domestic violence attached to a disorderly conduct arrest.
A Westport Attorney Can Help Following a Disorderly Conduct Arrest
While an arrest does not always lead to a conviction, disorderly conduct arrests are unfortunately common in Westport, and often based on questionable grounds. Depending on the circumstances, you may have to deal with preliminary court hearings, legal fees, and other expenses and losses purely because of a minor disagreement.
Regardless of why or how you were arrested, though, retaining knowledgeable legal counsel is crucial when dealing with disorderly conduct charges. To start discussing your case, call Mark Sherman Law today to set up a consultation.