As a college student, you work hard to pursue your scholarly goals and get good grades. Cramming for exams and hitting the books causes a lot of stress, and sometimes you need to let loose. Whether you are just hanging out with friends or drinking alcohol at a crazy party, you may find yourself arrested because of disorderly conduct.

But what exactly does “disorderly conduct” mean? It is essential for you to know about this crime and how may it affect your schooling.

Public disorderly conduct

According to South Carolina laws, it is illegal to behave in an obnoxious manner or appear grossly intoxicated in public. While the term “gross intoxication” is difficult to define, it generally refers to a condition that is obvious to outside observers. For example, if you are outside of the dorms and yelling obscenities at other students, it is possible that a police officer may arrest you because you are visibly drunk.

This statute also says it is illegal to use vulgar language in public, at a gathering or within hearing distance of a church or school. It is also unlawful to shoot a firearm within 50 yards of a public road if you are under the influence of alcohol unless you happen to be on your own property. 

Other crimes that disturb the peace

South Carolina has laws regarding a variety of other crimes against public policy. For example, it is illegal to interrupt a funeral service or disturb religious worship. Disorderly conduct charges may also come with other charges, such as underage drinking, DUI, drug possession or assault.

Penalties for disorderly conduct

A disorderly conduct conviction may have the following consequences:

  • Land you in jail
  • Leave you with a hefty fine
  • Result in a loss of financial aid
  • Cause you to lose your membership or status at a fraternity, sorority or club
  • Make it difficult for you to get a job

If you are facing criminal charges related to disorderly conduct, what you do regarding your defense can matter greatly.