Public Intoxication Laws
In Alabama, there is a crime on the books called public intoxication. A person commits this crime if they appear in a public place while under the influence of alcohol, narcotics, or other drugs to the degree that they endanger themselves, another person or property, or by boisterous and offensive conduct they annoy another person in their vicinity. Public intoxication in Alabama is considered a violation with a fine of up to $200 and a jail sentence of up to 30 days. Other names for this violation include public drunkeness. Our firm gets phone calls from parents of university students who were arrested the night of a big college football game, either on campus or downtown Birmingham, Auburn, or Tuscaloosa.
Public intoxication is a charge that is commonly misunderstood. Being drunk or otherwise intoxicated in public does not mean that you can be charged with this crime. You must also be causing a scene or are a danger to yourself or others.Defenses Against Alabama Public Intoxication
To be convicted of public intoxication, the a state of Alabama prosecutor must prove several factors: that your actions were endangering you and those around you; you had intent to break the law; and that you exhibited annoying and boisterous behavior in a public place.
An experienced Birmingham AL defense attorney will examine all of the facts of your case to determine if any holes exist in the evidence the prosecution is presenting against you. For example, if you were intoxicated in public but were not exhibiting any kind of dangerous or loud behaviors (say instead you fell asleep), charges of public intoxication may not hold up in a court of law. We will also try to locate other witnesses who can testify that you were peaceful the entire time.
If you have been charged with public intoxication, the experienced defense attorneys at Polson & Polson can help. Once we know the details of your case, we can get to work on building your defense and we will appear with you at your first court date.