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Knoxville Public Intoxication Attorney

Knox County public intoxication defense attorney

Defense Lawyer for Public Intoxication in Knoxville, TN

In the state of Tennessee, people can be charged with public intoxication if they cause a public disturbance or endanger themselves or others after using alcohol or drugs. This offense is taken seriously by law enforcement, and people may be arrested due to what is seen as inappropriate, offensive, or dangerous behavior. In some cases, young people may be arrested for public intoxication when attending parties, sports games, or other events on or near the University of Tennessee or other college campuses. These charges can lead to a variety of penalties, and in addition to criminal charges, college students may face discipline from a university, and their employment prospects and other aspects of their lives could be affected.

At Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney, our criminal defense lawyers understand the seriousness of these charges and other types of offenses involving alcohol. We provide representation for college students or others who are charged with public intoxication, and we can also assist with cases involving underage drinking, possession of fake IDs, or driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). We believe in providing a robust defense for our clients and helping them understand the best strategies that may allow for a dismissal of the charges against them or a reduction of the potential penalties they may face.

Types of Behavior That May Lead to Public Intoxication Charges

Under Tennessee law, the offense of public intoxication may apply if a person was under the influence of alcohol or any other intoxicating substances in public and acted in a way that put their own safety or the safety of others at risk. These charges may also apply if a person engaged in behavior that was unreasonably annoying to anyone nearby. There are several types of behavior that could potentially result in public intoxication charges, including:

  • Disorderly conduct: Engaging in rowdy or disruptive behavior while under the influence of alcohol may attract attention from law enforcement officers. This includes yelling, arguing, fighting, or creating a generally disturbing atmosphere.
  • Trespassing: Entering private property without permission while under the influence increases the likelihood of drawing attention from law enforcement officers.
  • Vandalism: Engaging in acts such as destruction of property, damaging vehicles, or marking walls or other surfaces with graffiti may lead to other types of criminal charges in addition to public intoxication.
  • Potential harm to oneself or others: Evidence suggesting that a person poses a threat to their own safety or the safety and well-being of others can lead to public intoxication charges. This might include stumbling into traffic, falling and injuring oneself, or getting into altercations with others while visibly intoxicated. If a person engaged in threatening behavior or inflicted injuries on others, they could also potentially be charged with assault.

Penalties for Public Intoxication in Tennessee

In Tennessee, public intoxication is a Class C misdemeanor. If convicted of this offense, a person may face the following penalties:

  • Fine: Those found guilty of public intoxication may be required to pay a fine of up to $50.
  • Jail time: The maximum sentence for a Class C misdemeanor is 30 days.
  • Probation: A judge may sentence a person charged with public intoxication to a probation period instead of or in addition to fines or jail time. Probation usually comes with certain conditions, such as mandatory alcohol education classes or community service hours.
  • Court-ordered treatment program: If substance abuse issues are identified during the legal process, a judge may order a person to participate in a substance abuse treatment program designed to address underlying issues contributing to their behavior.
  • Criminal record: A conviction for public intoxication will result in a permanent record that could impact a person's future employment opportunities and their personal reputation.

Contact Our Knoxville Public Intoxication Defense Lawyers

If you have been charged with public intoxication in Knoxville or Knox County, it is essential to seek legal representation from an experienced criminal defense attorney. At Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney, we will provide you with guidance and representation, helping you understand your options as you defend against these charges. To schedule a free consultation and begin building your defense, please contact us at 865-281-1000. We understand the challenges you are facing, and we are here to help.

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