Intoxicated Endangerment and Disorderly Intoxication

In Maryland there are a large number of crimes that are not located in the criminal law section of the state statutes.  These laws include numerous handgun and firearm offenses, which are part of the public safety code.  There are also a number of laws that are part of the family law article, including protective order violations.  The education code even has a criminal law regarding compulsory school attendance for children.  In addition to these three articles, there are also civil and criminal infractions located in the alcohol and beverages section of the Maryland code.  These infractions are split up in two categories that include violations by a consumer and violations by a license holder or seller.  This page will focus on violations alleged to have been committed by a consumer.
Most people are aware that possession of an open container is illegal, but few realize it is a violation of the alcohol and beverage law.  The same goes for consumption of alcoholic beverages in public.  Both of these offenses are civil infractions that are punishable by a $100 fine, unless the violation occurred in a city or other municipality that makes it a criminal offense such as Ocean City.  In Ocean city public consumption and possession of an open container is still a jailable offense.  The only jailable offense under the Maryland state alcohol and beverage code regarding consumers is the disorderly intoxication section.  Section 6-320 of alcohol and beverage code prohibits both disorderly intoxication and intoxicated endangerment.  Disorderly intoxication is defined as being intoxicated or consuming alcohol in public and causing a disturbance, while intoxicated endangerment is defined as being intoxicated and endangering the safety of an individual or property.
Both disorderly intoxication and intoxicated endangerment carry a maximum penalty of up to 90 days in jail and a fine of $100.  This means neither of these offenses carry the jury trial right.  Therefore, a defendant must handle his or her case in district court unless there are more serious offenses attached.  We have seen cases where defendants are charged with assault and DUI by the police and then charged with disorderly intoxication or intoxicated endangerment by the State at a later date.  We have also seen cases where defendants are charged with one of these violations on the night of their arrest by police due to alleged uncooperative behavior after police arrive.  Each of these charges are totally subjective, which means an experienced disorderly intoxication lawyer can argue for a dismissal in a variety of ways.  While disorderly intoxication does not require proof of actual intoxication, it typically requires witness testimony of the defendant’s behavior, and we will subject all witness to rigorous cross examination.  Intoxicated endangerment requires the state to prove a specific act occurred that endangered another person or property in addition to proving that the defendant was actually intoxicated. 
Maryland intoxicated endangerment lawyer Benjamin Herbst has successfully handled all types of alcohol and beverage violations and is standing by to assist in your case.   Benjamin has experience representing defendants in all Maryland jurisdictions including the Eastern Shore, Western Maryland and the Baltimore and Washington Metro areas.  He is standing by to offer a free consultation anytime at 410-207-2598 and offers flexible payments plans for criminal defense cases.  Do not risk the possibility of a permanent criminal record or serving jail time for an offense that could be dismissed with proper legal representation.  All defendants are advised to retain a lawyer before showing up to court, and we are ready and able to assist.
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