Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly

Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly is found in section 14 of the Summary Offences Act 1966 in Victoria. It is a criminal offence that is committed by a person who was found drunk and disorderly in a public place.

Have you been accused of Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly?

Drunk and Disorderly
Police Interview

Do you believe that the Police who investigate crimes are searching for the truth? Do you think that a Police interview is just an opportunity for you to tell your side of the story? Unfortunately the Police are not searching for the truth, they are working to obtain evidence of a sufficient weight to secure a conviction. They are not interviewing you to hear you side of the story, they are interviewing you hoping that you make admissions to the offending. If you are being interviewed for being drunk and disorderly it is most likely the best course of action to make a no comment interview. Call out lawyers today for advice on how to deal with the interview for your particular circumstances.

Pleading Not Guilty

If you wish to plead guilty it is important to speak with one of our expert criminal law experts who can advise you on the strengths and weaknesses of the Prosecution case against you. We will see things in the brief that you may not and we can point to inconsistencies in the Police narrative that might make contesting the charges viable. As soon as you receive a brief give us a call so we can go through it with you and give you advice.

Pleading Guilty

If you wish to plead guilty to drunk and disorderly conduct we can assist you through the court process. We can help you obtain references and make your plea in mitigation. We can ensure that the right charges are before the Court. Our lawyers have many years of experience in plea making and can ensure that you get the fairest sentence possible.

Which court will the case be heard in?

The offence of Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly is a summary offence heard in the Magistrates’ Court.

What is the legal definition of Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly?

The Summary Offences Act defines ‘public place’ as –

A public road, street, passage, footpath or alley,
Any park, garden, reserve or other place of public recreation or resort,
Railway station platform or carriage,
Any wharf pier or jetty,
Any passenger ship,
Any public vehicle for hire,
Any church,
Government school,
Any public hall or theatre,
Any market,
Any auction room,
Any licensed premises, or
Any public sporting field.

The legislation for this offence can be found on section 14 of Summary Offences Act 1966.

Examples of Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly
  • A person found drunk in the city
  • A person found drunk in the MCG
  • A person found drunk in a shopping centre
Elements of the offence

In essence to prove this charge the Police must show that the accused was drunk and whilst drunk behaved in a disorderly manner in a public place.

“Can the Police prove you were drunk?”

Defences to this could be duress, a factual dispute, the concept of beyond reasonable doubt, honest and reasonable mistake of belief, wrongful identification, lack of intent, or mental impairment.

You should call us to discuss your case with one of our experienced lawyers. Deciding on whether to plead guilty or not has important implications for you and should be made after proper discussions with a criminal lawyer.

Questions in cases like this
  • Were you in a public place?
  • Were you drunk?
Maximum penalty for section 14 of the Summary Offences Act 1966

There is a maximum penalty of 20 penalty units or 3 days imprisonment for anyone found guilty of Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly (s14 of the Summary Offences Act 1966) as a first offence, and 20 penalty units or 1 month imprisonment for a second or subsequent offence.


Sentencing in the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria

Sentencing Statistics Pie Chart for Drunk and Disorderly in a Public Place in the Magistrates' Court of Victoria between 2018 and 2021

Other important resources
Case studies related to Persons Found Drunk and Disorderly