New Jersey Juvenile Disorderly Conduct Lawyer
Juvenile Defense Attorney with Offices in Hackensack, Morristown, Little Falls, and Camden NJ
Disorderly conduct is an extremely common offense in New Jersey, encompassing any type of behavior that may be deemed “improper,” as well as language considered “offensive.” The legal language on disorderly conduct is purposefully imprecise for this very purpose: it allows law enforcement officers to operate with broad discretion when determining behavior that may constitute disorderly conduct. Although these offenses often involve alcohol (i.e. “drunk and disorderly”) and occur in locations where alcohol is consumed, a person need to have consumed alcohol to be charged with disorderly conduct. These charges can arise in stadiums during events and games, at bars and parties, on college campuses, and essentially in any location where people gather in groups.
Alissa Hascup is an award-winning criminal defense attorney who aggressively defends juveniles and young adults charged with criminal offenses in New Jersey. During her work as a former Municipal Prosecutor, Ms. Hascup prosecuted countless disorderly conduct cases, which provided her with intimate knowledge of the way in which the State constructs cases against these defendants. She now leverages this foresight to create comprehensive and highly effective defense arguments for her clients. From Essex to Bergen, and Morris to Monmouth counties, she regularly fights on behalf of students at universities like Montclair State, Drew, Kean, and Fairleigh Dickinson, as well as juveniles and other young adults. In fact, she was recently named among the 10 Best in New Jersey, by the American Institute of Criminal Law Attorneys. For a free consultation with Ms. Hascup today, contact her offices at 862-257-1200. The answers you need to move forward are just a phone call away.
Disorderly Conduct Charges in New Jersey
Disorderly conduct is a criminal offense in New Jersey, the details of which are outlined in section N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2 of the State’s Criminal Code. Disorderly conduct is typically charged as a petty disorderly persons offense, which is similar to a misdemeanor. Disorderly conduct charges are separated into two distinct categories: improper behavior and offensive language. Under the law, improper behavior can mean engaging in fighting or threatening, or violent or tumultuous behavior, with the purpose of causing a public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm; OR creating a hazardous or physically dangerous condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose to the actor. It can also mean using unreasonably loud and offensively coarse or abusive language in a public place, thus offending any of the people present.
Juvenile Charges for Disorderly Conduct in New Jersey
If you are charged with disorderly conduct and you are under the age of 18, you are legally a juvenile and will be prosecuted within the juvenile justice system. This means that you will appear before a Family Court judge in the Juvenile Part of the Family Division in the Superior Court in the county where you live. Essentially, if you are charged with a criminal offense at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, which is in Bergen County, but your home is in Somerset County, your case will be heard and decided in the Somerset County Superior Court Family Division. You are required to have an attorney represent you during these proceedings, and he or she can prove extremely valuable when pursuing your best outcome.
If you are found guilty of disorderly conduct, you are actually adjudicated delinquent, which is similar to a conviction in adult criminal court. Because you are a juvenile, your sentence will not be based on the same rules and standards as adult cases in New Jersey. In juvenile court, the guiding principle is the best interests of the child. As such, the judge will weigh a number of factors before determining the appropriate sentence in your case. Important determining factors include: the nature and circumstances of the offense; your age, previous record, and social services received; your unique needs; and the likelihood that you will respond well to rehabilitative/reformative measures. Some of the most common sentences in juvenile cases include: probation, community service, mental health counseling, detention (incarceration), drug rehabilitation treatment, driver’s license suspension, or restitution payments. With an experienced attorney on your side, you can rest-assured that your interests are thoroughly protected and advocated for.
Disorderly Conduct Charges for College Students and Young Adults in NJ
If you are 18 or older and charged with disorderly conduct in New Jersey, your case will be decided in the local Municipal Court associated with the location of your alleged offense. So, if you were charged with disorderly conduct at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, your case will be adjudicated in Madison Joint Municipal Court. As stated previously, disorderly conduct is considered a petty disorderly persons offense, which may result in:
- A sentence to serve up to 30 days in the county jail
- A fine of up to $500
- A conviction on your criminal record
A conviction for disorderly conduct will result in a charge on your criminal record, which will appear on a background check when you apply for educational, employment, or other opportunities in the future. Although you may be able to have your record expunged on a one-time basis, the conviction will always appear on a background check if you apply for a job in government, law enforcement, or the U.S. military.
Contact an East Rutherford NJ Juvenile Disorderly Conduct Attorney Today
If you are a juvenile, college student, or other young adult charged with disorderly conduct, it is essential to protect your innocence and the future you deserve. Contact The Law Offices of Alissa Hascup to discuss your case and receive a free consultation. With offices conveniently located in Hackensack, Little Falls, Camden, and Morristown, we defend clients in courtrooms and school disciplinary proceedings across the state. Simply call 862-257-1200 today.