The snow is melting in Oshkosh and soon spring will be here— starting the annual season of pub crawls, music festivals…..and the drinking that’s common at these events. While this is a part of life for many young people and students in the area, here are some things to keep in mind so you can stay out of trouble.
First, the City of Oshkosh has its own municipal code, and you can be charged with violating it by the city. These offenses have separate penalties that are not necessarily the same as if you charged with a crime by the state. Relevant to most college students is Section 17-7, which prohibits having open alcohol containers in certain public areas—for instance, on streets and sidewalks. If you violate this law, you can be fined anywhere from $75 to $500, in addition to having to pay court fees. If you don’t pay the fine, your driver’s license can be suspended or you could even serve up to 60 days in jail.
The penalties can become even more severe if you are charged by the state. For example, if you’re walking down the street with an open beer and yelling towards some friends—now you could additionally be charged with disorderly conduct, which has maximum penalties of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. Damaging property is punishable in Wisconsin by up to 9 months in jail and a fine of up to $10,000. Battery (getting in a fight) has the same, or worse, consequences.
And of course, don’t drink and drive! An OWI or DUI has serious consequences.
So this spring and summer, go out and have fun—just remember to only drink in designated areas when in public, and be aware that the authorities will not care that you were just part of the crowd if you were breaking the law.
If you get ticketed or arrested, you will need excellent an excellent Oshkosh attorney. Contact the attorneys at Petit & Dommershausen today 1-920-231-0699!
Our legal practice focuses primarily on criminal defense and family law. We practice in all of Northeast Wisconsin, including Brown (Green Bay), Outagamie (Appleton), and Winnebago (Oskhosh) counties.
Blog post prepare by Attorney Brian Kane, an Oshkosh Attorney.