What is Disorderly Conduct?

Posted By David L. Carlson, Attorney At Law || 24-Dec-2015

Governed by Va. Code § 18.2-415, disorderly conduct is a crime which typically involves offensive or disruptive public activity. This can be executed in two different ways with the intention to cause or disregard the risk of causing public alarm, annoyance, or inconvenience.

First, disorderly conduct can be committed if a person’s behavior provokes a violent action towards another. Second, whether intentionally or while intoxicated, if a person disrupts a memorial service or funeral, a school or school activity, a government meeting, or a house of worship. Obstruction and unlawful assembly can also be associated with disorderly conduct.

Penalties for Disorderly Conduct in Virginia

Disorderly conduct is a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail, a maximum fine of $2,500, or both. The punishment for obstruction ranges from a maximum fine of $500 and a one year jail sentence with a maximum fine of $2,500. Refusing to disperse is considered a Class 3 misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $500.

Unlawful assembly, or participating in a riot, is a Class 1 misdemeanor. If an individual is armed with a firearm or another deadly weapon, then it is a Class 5 felony, punishable by 12 months in jail and a maximum fine of $2,500, or one to ten years in prison. A rioter who causes injury or property damage can be convicted of a Class 6 felony, which is similar to the Class 5 felony punishments.

If you have been convicted of disorderly conduct, contact our Richmond criminal defense attorneys today.

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