Publicly Drunk Man Not Arrested in Lawrenceville

Posted by Richard Lawson | Jun 15, 2020 | 0 Comments

Gwinnett County Courthouse

Lawrenceville, Ga. - Amidst all the protests and demands for police reformation, there has been an example of kindness and compassion displayed by two officers in Gwinnett County.

According to them, a drunk man approached their headquarters with an alcoholic beverage in tow. The man then asked the deputies to please arrest him for public drunkenness. Instead, the deputies attempted to help the man. He told them that he lost his job because of the pandemic and subsequently became homeless. The two officers paid for the man to stay in a room at a nearby hotel.

As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, I will outline the law behind the offense of public drunkenness in today's post.

Public Drunkenness in Georgia

Public Drunkenness in Georgia is defined by the Georgia Code in O.C.G.A. § 16-11-41 as:

A person who shall be and appear in an intoxicated condition in any public place or within the curtilage of any private residence not his own other than by invitation of the owner or lawful occupant, which condition is made manifest by boisterousness, by indecent condition or act, or by vulgar, profane, loud, or unbecoming language, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Being convicted of public drunkenness can result in up to 12 months of jail time as well as fines up to $1,000.

On top of the state law cited above that encompasses public drunkenness, many municipalities and counties enact local ordinances that criminalize similar behavior.   Local ordinances can strip away the requirement that the arrested person act in an indecent condition or act, or by vulgar, profane, loud, or unbecoming language. 

Moreover, local ordinances can simply make being impaired and in public the crime in and of itself.

Practice Note

Call our offices today if you or a loved one has been arrested in connection to an alcohol or drug related offense. We can help you with your case now.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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