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Bose Law Firm, PLLC
Former Police Officers

Email: bose@boselawfirm.com

Springfield Offices:
6354 Rolling Mill Place
Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22152

703-926-3900
 
 
VIRGINIA DISORDERLY CONDUCT

Virginia Code 18.2-415 makes it a class 1 misdemeanor for disorderly conduct when an individual, . . . with the intent to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof, he:

A. In any street, highway, public building, or while in or on a public conveyance, or public place engages in conduct having a direct tendency to cause acts of violence by the person or persons at whom, individually, such conduct is directed; or

B. Willfully or being intoxicated, whether willfully or not, and whether such intoxication results from self-administered alcohol or other drug of whatever nature, disrupts any meeting of the governing body of any political subdivision of this Commonwealth or a division or agency thereof, or of any school, literary society or place of religious worship, if the disruption (i) prevents or interferes with the orderly conduct of the meeting or (ii) has a direct tendency to cause acts of violence by the person or persons at whom, individually, the disruption is directed; or

C. Willfully or while intoxicated, whether willfully or not, and whether such intoxication results from self-administered alcohol or other drug of whatever nature, disrupts the operation of any school or any activity conducted or sponsored by any school, if the disruption (i) prevents or interferes with the orderly conduct of the operation or activity or (ii) has a direct tendency to cause acts of violence by the person or persons at whom, individually, the disruption is directed.

In defending a charge of disorderly conduct, the key is whether the prosecutor can establish each specific element outlined by the statute. Again, the accused must either intend that his actions cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm or recklessly create such a situation. The prosecutor must establish that the prohibited behavior occurred in a public place as opposed to a private venue. Furthermore, the conduct must have a direct tendency to cause acts of violence. The exercise of free speech through words not directed at any one person would not be sufficient to establish a case of disorderly conduct.