Las Vegas Criminal Law Blog

Can a Disorderly Conduct Charge Be Dropped?

Everyone has a rough day every once in a while, and sometimes that can lead to a disorderly conduct charge. Whether you went a little crazy at your local bar or had a few too many drinks at the casino, finding yourself disturbing the peace in Las Vegas or any other location is never a positive outcome. Fortunately, there are a few ways a disorderly conduct charge can be dropped, and it’s good to know how to address a case if you find yourself involved.

What Constitutes Disorderly Conduct?

Disorderly conduct varies from state to state, so you should always contact your local criminal defense lawyer for legal advice on your situation when in doubt. The charge is prevalent in Nevada, considering the number of drinks, bars, casinos, and other nightlife activities available. You can even be arrested just for being drunk in public, despite the vast amount of drinks on every Las Vegas street corner. As a “catch-all offense,” disorderly conduct typically includes disruptive behavior such as

  • Challenging or engaging in fights
  • Obscene gestures and language
  • Loitering
  • Disturbing the peace
  • Harassing and disrupting others

What Penalties Do You Face for Disorderly Conduct?

In Nevada, and most states, someone arrested for disorderly conduct typically does not face the strictest penalties, but the criminal conviction still stays on your record (assuming it isn’t dropped). It carries a maximum of six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000, and it’s common for first-time offenders not to face jail time. 

How Long Will Disorderly Conduct Convictions Stay On Your Record?

If you’ve been convicted of disorderly conduct, you probably want to know how long it’ll stay on your criminal record. Disorderly conduct charges can be sealed from Nevada residents’ records after one year. If your case is dismissed, you can get a record seal immediately after the dismissal. This isn’t the case everywhere, and different states — like Pennsylvania, which offers record sealing after five years — have different rulings on how long criminal charges stay on file.

What Factors Impact Dismissal of Disorderly Conduct Charges?

If you’re facing a disorderly conduct case, it’s a good idea to understand what factors can lead to the dismissal of your charge. On top of the benefit of immediate record sealing, dismissal of a disorderly conduct charge has plenty of benefits, and avoiding jail time is always a plus. A few factors can contribute to the dismissal of your disorderly conduct case. If you feel that you identify with any of these, reach out to a criminal defense attorney and discuss your options.

Details of the Altercation

Were you falsely accused of disturbing the peace? Did a law enforcement official misidentify you as a culprit for a crime? Or maybe your actions were an act of self-defense. A few of these important details can lead to a dismissal of a disorderly conduct charge. 

Initial Charge Given

On occasion, prosecutors can lower an assault or battery charge down to a disorderly conduct charge. It gives you a better-sounding offense on your record and allows you to have the charge sealed after one year instead of two for assault or battery. That being said, someone convicted of an assault or battery usually won’t receive immediate dismissal of their disorderly conduct charge.

First-Time Offenders

If this is your first disorderly conduct charge, you might be in luck. First-time offenders are likely to receive a more lenient sentence, usually being offered to pay a fine and complete community service in exchange for a dismissal. Repeat offenders are more likely to face the stricter end of the penalties.

Received a Disorderly Conduct Charge? Fight it Today!

Don’t let disorderly conduct charges ruin your good time in Las Vegas. As simple as disorderly conduct chargers seem, you don’t want to face penalties you can avoid with an experienced law firm. The Law Offices of Benjamin Nadig offer the help you need to dismiss any case, including any disorderly conduct as well as assault and battery charges in Nevada. Don’t hesitate to contact us today!