New Year’s Eve is a day of celebration as we all welcome in the New Year with friends and family. This is often celebrated with Champagne and bar crawls. Sometimes these bar crawls can get a little out-of-hand and people can become a bit “disorderly”.


If you go out this New Year’s Eve and decide to take a few celebratory shots, you may find yourself facing charges of drunk and disorderly if you take the friendly shenanigans a bit too far. 


What North Carolina says about intoxication in public.


Many people don’t know this, but public intoxication is not a crime in North Carolina. That being said, there are things that you can get arrested for while intoxicated in public. These three elements, if present, can lead to you being arrested:


  1.     You must be intoxicated beyond the legal limit.
  2.     Your behavior/actions must actually appear to be drunk.
  3.     You must be in a public place.


In this instance, North Carolina defines a “public place” as a place that is open to the public, whether it is publicly or privately owned. In legal terms, “intoxicated” is when a person’s mental or physical functioning is substantially impaired as a result of the use of alcohol.


Disorderly Conduct


As mentioned before, public intoxication alone is not a crime in North Carolina. Only when you add the disorderly portion does it become an arrest-able offense. Unfortunately, disorderly actions are vaguely defined as any act that corrupts public morals, violates standards of public decency, or affects the peace and quiet of other individuals.


State legislation (Article 59) outlines five specific scenarios in which you are considered both intoxicated and disruptive, stating, “It shall be unlawful for any person in a public place to be intoxicated and disruptive in any of the following ways:”


  1.     Blocking or interfering with traffic.
  2.     Blocking, preventing, or interfering with access to or passage across a sidewalk or entrance to a building.
  3.     Grabbing, shoving, pushing, or fighting others, or challenging others to fight.
  4.     Cursing or shouting at or rudely insulting others.
  5.     Panhandling or begging for money or other property.


If you find yourself in trouble with the law and needing help making bail, contact Big Mike Bail Bonds at (919) 934-5656.  

Big Mike
Post by Big Mike
December 1, 2019