Intoxicated and Disruptive
Intoxicated and disruptive is a common charge throughout North Carolina. It is especially prevalent in areas where there is a large concentration of bars and clubs, such as in the Queen City Quarter in Charlotte or at one of the many races in Concord. Officers will often bring intoxicated and disruptive charges when they know someone has been drinking but cannot charge them with public intoxication. However, North Carolina law requires specific proof to convict on these charges—and it’s often not there.
At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, our Charlotte criminal defense lawyers have extensive experience defending clients of all ages and from all walks of life. We have handled countless cases involving charges of intoxicated and disruptive behavior and know what it takes to provide you with the defense you’ll need to beat the charges and put your case behind you.What is the Crime of Being Intoxicated and Disruptive?
Under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-444, the offense of intoxicated and disruptive applies in a narrow range of circumstances. More specifically, the prosecution must prove the following elements before a judge or jury can convict you:
- You were in a public place,
- You were “intoxicated and disruptive,” which means any one of the following applies:
- You were blocking or interfering with the normal flow of traffic on a public road or highway.
- You were lying on the sidewalk or otherwise preventing access to a building.
- You were grabbing, shoving, pushing or challenging others to a fight, or
- You were cursing, shouting, or rudely insulting others, or
- You were asking others for money or other property.
Yes, to prove you were guilty of being intoxicated and disruptive, the prosecution must establish that you were substantially impaired by alcohol. However, unlike in DWI cases, there is no pre-established definition of what constitutes “substantially impaired.” Instead, this is a question of fact that is left up to the judge or jury.What is the Punishment for Being Intoxicated and Disruptive?
A conviction for intoxicated and disruptive conduct is a Class 3 misdemeanor. In North Carolina, a Class 3 misdemeanor conviction also carries a maximum of 20 days in jail and a fine of up to $200. And while jail time is rarely included in a sentence for a first offense, judges routinely order convicted defendants to complete community service and alcohol treatment and pay hefty court costs and fines. In addition, if convicted, it means you will have a criminal record, which will likely have an adverse effect on your ability to go back to school, enlist in the military, or obtain certain employment opportunities.Have You Been Charged With the Crime of Being Intoxicated and Disorderly in Charlotte?
If you are facing allegations that you were intoxicated and disorderly, reach out to the dedicated Charlotte criminal defense lawyers at the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC. At our firm, we deal with intoxicated and disruptive cases very regularly and have a great deal of experience developing compelling defenses that often result in withdrawn charges or a “not guilty” verdict. A criminal defense lawyer at the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, is ready to assist you on your case. We understand that it takes a dedicated attorney to get to know you and the facts of your case, and we are prepared to ensure you receive the defense you deserve. If you or a loved one has been charged with being intoxicated and disruptive in public, call our office today. We have offices in both Charlotte and Concord with an attorney waiting to discuss your case. Our consultations are free, and we offer flexible payment plans. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation today, call 704-405-2850, or connect with us through our secure online contact form.