One of the problems with California’s legal system is that sometimes it’s difficult to know that you’re breaking the law. In many disorderly conduct cases, people think they’re just having a good time or being opinionated until the police show up. Sometimes people don’t even know what they’ve done until they hear the charges as the booking officer works through the paperwork.What is considered disorderly conduct can vary from one state to another? Some cities even have different rules regarding what is and isn’t disorderly conduct.In California, disorderly conduct is generally considered behavior that irritates, stresses, or alarms those around you. That doesn’t mean your little sister can file disorderly conduct charges against you each time you annoy her while you’re at home. However, if the pair of you are at a bar and you start shouting at her, the other bar patrons will likely call the police and you could be arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.Most disorderly conduct cases in California involve at least one person who is publicly intoxicated.In addition to getting too wild while at the bar, California considers the following activities to be forms of disorderly conduct:
  • Lewd/lascivious acts
  • Soliciting
  • Engaging in Prostitution
  • Loud public arguments
  • Invasion of privacy
  • Peeping

Making a fake or prank phone call to 911 might seem like good fun but it’s not something you want to follow through with. Neither law enforcement offices nor court officials have a sense of humor.To put it simply, making fake or prank 911 calls is illegal. In some situations, that single phone call could even result in felony charges.The best way to learn just how much trouble making a fake or prank 911 call can land you in is by setting aside a few minutes to read California’s Penal Code 148.3. When you do, you’ll learn that you can’t:
  • Call 911 and make a fake report of a crime/injury/accident
  • You can’t make a 911 call that results in the dispatcher or a law enforcement offer making a 911 report
  • You can’t use 911 to report a fictional emergency
  • You can’t call 911 and make a report that you know is false

Did you know that California leads the nation in exonerations? According to the National Registry of Exonerations, 120 people have been exonerated in California. Additional research reveals that in the past 30 years, California courts have dealt with over 200 wrongful conviction cases. It’s estimated...

Most Americans know that the First Amendment grants the right to free speech. The problem that many of us encounter is we don’t fully grasp the differences between free speech and slander.

What is Free Speech?

Many of us interpret the First Amendment to mean that we’re free to say whatever we want, to whomever we want, whenever we want. That’s not the way free speech works. The purpose of free speech is to provide Americans with the ability to openly speak against the government without fear of legal ramifications. What freedom of speech doesn’t do is allow you to say whatever you want about neighbors, family, and businesses you don’t like.

What is Slander?

The legal definition of slander is, “oral defamation, in which someone tells one or more persons an untruth about another which untruth will harm the reputation of the person defamed. Slander is a civil wrong (tort) and can be the basis for a lawsuit. Damages (payoff for worth) for slander may be limited to actual (special) damages unless there is malicious intent, since such damages are usually difficult to specify and harder to prove. Some statements such as an untrue accusation of having committed a crime, having a loathsome disease, or being unable to perform one's occupation are treated as slander per se since the harm and malice are obvious, and therefore usually result in general and even punitive damage recovery by the person harmed. Words spoken over the air on television or radio are treated as libel (written defamation) and not slander on the theory that broadcasting reaches a large audience as much if not more than printed publications.”In California, slander legally takes place when:
  • You say something that you know is untrue
  • When you make a statement that you know isn’t privileged
  • When you make a statement that is said with the intent to do harm or cause an injury