Criminal Law

Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Criminal Law
This answer was rated:

I got arrested for harassment at a club last night. I was intoxicated

but I swear I did...
I got arrested for harassment at a club last night. I was intoxicated but I swear I did not harass anyone. I had so much fun, was dancing on the dance floor and accidently knocked off the speakers and then next thing I knew I was getting kicked out the club and was in handcuffs by the police. My parents bailed me out in the morning but I have to go to court in a month. What is going to happen to me now? What should I do?
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Criminal Law Question
Answered in 1 hour by:
6/10/2013
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,065
Experience: Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
Verified
Thank you for using Just Answer.

Each state has different laws, obviously, so each state defines what constitutes "harassment" differently. Without knowing what state this occured in, I cannot tell you what the law says, or what specific penalties you may be facing. If you want to reply and let me know this information, I should be able to give you more specific information regarding the charge.

However, I can tell you that the first court appearance is just that - your first appearance before the court, a reading of the charge against you, and normally, when you would enter a plea. If you don't have an attorney, and cannot afford one, you can also request that a public defender be appointed, and the court will make a determination if you qualify.

It is to your benefit to plead not guilty. The state has the burden of proving that you are guilty of harassment beyond a reasonable doubt -you do not have the burden of proving your innocence. When you enter a not guilty plea, the case will be placed on the court's calendar, or docket, for a later date. This also gives you time to consult with your lawyer, to discuss the case with them, and for them to demand all discovery (evidence) that the state has against you. Once they have that information, the two of you can decide what your best course of action is. If you want to plead guilty, it is always better to have a lawyer try to negotiate with the prosecutor to reduce the charge or possible penalties.

If this is a first offense, a conviction likely would not result in jail time, but probation, a fine, community service, etc. Of course, no one wants a criminal conviction on their record - especially if you didn't do anything. In the meantime, before you speak to a lawyer, don't discuss the specifics of the case with anyone. Communications with your lawyer and his/her staff may be privileged, but conversations regarding your case you have with others, such as friends, are not. Furthermore, while I would not expect you to be contacted by the police prior to your hearing, if you are contacted and asked to give a statement or answer questions, do not do so without speaking with counsel first.
Ask Your Own Criminal Law Question
Customer reply replied 4 years ago

I'm in Hawaii. I have never been arrested before and didn't realize I was until I was in handcuffs :( But thank you so much for your time and the advice...now I have some idea of what to expect. Aloha :)

Thank you for your reply.

Here is the statute (law) in Hawaii that defines what harassment is:

§711-1106 Harassment. (1) A person commits the offense of harassment if, with intent to harass, annoy, or alarm any other person, that person:

(a) Strikes, shoves, kicks, or otherwise touches another person in an offensive manner or subjects the other person to offensive physical contact;

(b) Insults, taunts, or challenges another person in a manner likely to provoke an immediate violent response or that would cause the other person to reasonably believe that the actor intends to cause bodily injury to the recipient or another or damage to the property of the recipient or another;

(c) Repeatedly makes telephone calls, facsimile transmissions, or any form of electronic communication as defined in section(NNN) NNN-NNNN2), including electronic mail transmissions, without purpose of legitimate communication;

(d) Repeatedly makes a communication anonymously or at an extremely inconvenient hour;

(e) Repeatedly makes communications, after being advised by the person to whom the communication is directed that further communication is unwelcome; or

(f) Makes a communication using offensively coarse language that would cause the recipient to reasonably believe that the actor intends to cause bodily injury to the recipient or another or damage to the property of the recipient or another.

As you can see, it's fairly broad. I don't know what may have happened that night, but it would have had to be something under sections a, b, or f most likely. You'll also notice the statute requires intent. Thus, you must have meant to do your actions. Not that alcohol is ever a good excuse, but if you so were intoxicated as to not be aware of your surroundings, you may be able to argue that you couldn't have formed intent to harass anyone. At the very least, the fact that you were drinking at the time should be discussed with your lawyer.

Petty Misdemeanor offenses are criminal offenses that are punishable by up to 6 months of incarceration. Petty misdemeanors may also be punishable by probationary terms of 6 to 12 months and fines up to $1000. Jail time upon a conviction for a first offense would be extremely unlikely with probation much more likely.

Your first court appearance for a petty misdemeanor offense would be an an arraignment and plea. At your initial court date, you will be informed of the charges against you. The judge will then set your case for trial and give you time to consult with an attorney.

Hope this helps. If you need additional information, please reply, otherwise, please remember to leave a positive rating, as that is the only way I am credited for my time assisting you.
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,065
Experience: Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
Verified
RobertJDFL and 87 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Ask your own question now
Ask RobertJDFL Your Own Question
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,065
14,065 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Experienced in multiple areas of the law.

RobertJDFL is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Your Expert advise has provided insight on a difficult situation. Thank you so much for the prompt response. I will definitely recommend your website to my friends.

NormaPensacola, FL

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Ely

Ely

Counselor at Law

3,175 satisfied customers

Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.

P. Simmons

P. Simmons

Lawyer

2,014 satisfied customers

16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.

LawTalk

LawTalk

Lawyer

1,815 satisfied customers

30 years legal experience

RobertJDFL

RobertJDFL

Lawyer

14,065 satisfied customers

Experienced in multiple areas of the law.

Nate

Nate

Lawyer

1,736 satisfied customers

Over 10 years of criminal defense practice.

Marsha411JD

Marsha411JD

Lawyer

1,623 satisfied customers

Licensed attorney with 29 yrs. exp. in criminal law

AttorneyTom

AttorneyTom

Lawyer

1,242 satisfied customers

Attorney

< Previous | Next >

Related Criminal Law Questions
Can a misdemeanor c charge be removed immediately? The case
can a misdemeanor c charge be removed immediately? The case was bodily injury and it was dismissed.… read more
xavierjd
xavierjd
Juris Doctor
3,361 satisfied customers
It began with a misdemeanor d.u.i. in Nevada 2011, no
Hello it began with a misdemeanor d.u.i. in Nevada 2011, no accident,non violent, non drug. Because of policy change in 2010 my charge was changed to a felony in 2012.I am dual citizen with now a curr… read more
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Juris Doctorate
1,354 satisfied customers
I am in court for criminal mistief in the state of indiana
i am in court for criminal mistief in the state of indiana marion county. I am illeged to break a windo . I am being charged with a felony because the total cost is said to be over 2500 dollars. I wan… read more
MShore Law
MShore Law
Doctoral Degree
1,233 satisfied customers
Minor misdemeanor citation 4.1. knowingly possess marijuana.
minor misdemeanor citation 4.1. knowingly possess marijuana. what is mininum punishment? is it possible to just pay a fine without losing my license or undergoing counsling? please help, Norwalk OH… read more
N Cal Atty
N Cal Atty
Doctoral Degree
59 satisfied customers
I'm writing a story about a rape trial. In trial, if the
I'm writing a story about a rape trial.In trial, if the alleged victim is giving testimony about the attack/rape, can she describe what her assailant was saying to her during the attack? Can she descr… read more
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD
Doctoral Degree
175 satisfied customers
Can I be cited for criminal Trespass from the tennis courts
Can I be cited for criminal Trespass from the tennis courts on a school grounds entirely at the discretion of the school officials… read more
MShore Law
MShore Law
Doctoral Degree
1,233 satisfied customers
I have a question about procedure in criminal court in
I have a question about procedure in criminal court in Texas; specifically if there is any way to request a pretrial hearing prior to indicment of a felony … read more
Ray
Ray
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
30,259 satisfied customers
Is it not uncommon for criminal court judges or their
Is it not uncommon for criminal court judges or their court's administration (e.g. bailiffs) to manipulate the only clock on the wall in the courtroom (e.g. set it purposely ahead of or behind the act… read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
I had a criminal court hearing and was sentenced, but was
I had a criminal court hearing and was sentenced, but was never sworn in can this be thrown out… read more
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Juris Doctorate
1,354 satisfied customers
I was convicted of a non-violent crime, that was unrelated
Hi I was convicted of a non-violent crime, that was unrelated to children. My kids school is now saying that in order to volunteer all parents are required to submit a livescan background check. Will … read more
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Juris Doctorate
1,354 satisfied customers
I have a court da on October 30 for a misdemeanor without a
I have a court da on October 30 for a misdemeanor without a bail and they didn't took my passport, can I leave the country? … read more
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq.
Juris Doctorate
1,354 satisfied customers
My son has to appear in court on a misdemeanor. doesn't have
hi, my son has to appear in court on a misdemeanor. doesn't have any record and I guess did not move when the police asked him to. we bailed him and he has to appear in court 9/26. Should he have a la… read more
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD
Doctoral Degree
175 satisfied customers
During my Bench Trial in Federal Court on a misdemeanor
During my Bench Trial in Federal Court on a misdemeanor charge of Simple Assault, I testified in my own defense. I would have made a more aggressive defense, but I thought certain points were best lef… read more
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD
Doctoral Degree
175 satisfied customers
Is it possible to extend the court trial date. If Yes, how
Is it possible to extend the court trial date. If Yes , how and when need to be informed before court trial date.… read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
27,509 satisfied customers
In Texas, in a Class Misdemeanor criminal case where the
In Texas , in a Class B Misdemeanor criminal case where the defendant is representing themselves.Is it correct that the defendant can request from the DA any offense reports, any designated documents,… read more
lucy7368
lucy7368
Juris Doctor
763 satisfied customers
During trial and post trial, court will document the
During trial and post trial, court will document the profession, current employer, family details etc. Do you think current employer will come to know about court proceedings, if they not conducting c… read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
27,509 satisfied customers
Second opinion] During trial and post trial, court will
Second opinion] During trial and post trial, court will document the profession, current employer, family details etc. Do you think current employer will come to know about court proceedings, if they … read more
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD
Doctoral Degree
175 satisfied customers
Originally a Phoenix Municipal Criminal misdemeanor, I was
Originally a Phoenix Municipal Criminal misdemeanor, I was convicted at trial. Sent case to Superior Court of Arizona. Appeal was affirmed. Now I would like to raise an Ineffective Assistance of Couns… read more
Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD
Doctoral Degree
175 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x