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Minnesota Disorderly Conduct Laws

States outlaw various bad behaviors that disturb others as disorderly conduct, breaching the peace, or similar public safety crimes. Many states also have public intoxication crimes. Minnesota views public intoxication as a social problem, not a crime. However, you could be be punished for the crimes you committed if you destroyed property, drove, or were disorderly while intoxicated.

The Minnesota disorderly conduct laws are outlined in the table below.

Code Sections Minnesota Statutes Sections 609.72 – Disorderly Conduct and 609.74 – Public Nuisance
What Is Prohibited?

Minnesota law prohibits the following behaviors

  • Disorderly Conduct – Fighting, disturbing a lawful assembly or meeting, engaging in offensive, abusive, or noisy conduct or using offensive, obscene, or abusive language to reasonably arouse anger or alarm
  • Public Nuisance – Intentionally doing any of the following:
    • Maintaining or permitting a condition that unreasonably annoys, injures, or endangers the safety, health, or “morals” of the public
    • Interfering with or obstructing any public highway or waters
    • Any other act or omission of a legal duty that is legally declared to be a public nuisance (for example by a local ordinance level)

The penalty for disorderly conduct related crimes depends on the actions and your relationship to the person disturbed by your behavior. Disorderly conduct and public nuisance are both misdemeanors punished by up to 90 days in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.

Permitting others to maintain a public nuisance on property you control is also a misdemeanor that is punished the same as the public nuisance itself.

An individual or facility caregiver responsible for the care of a vulnerable adult (i.e. an adult with mental, physical, or emotional disabilities that impair his or her ability to care for himself or herself), either because the vulnerable adult is a family member or due to a contract or other agreement, can’t harm that adult. A caregiver that engages in the offensive disorderly conduct behavior against a vulnerable adult can be imprisoned up to one year and be required to pay fine up to $3,000.

Defenses If the behavior that constituted disorderly conduct was caused by an epileptic seizure, the person hasn’t committed disorderly conduct. Other defenses, such as insanity, may apply.

Note: State laws change often, so it’s important to verify the accuracy of the laws you're researching.

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