Municipal Law

Can You Go to Jail for Playing Loud Music?

By Tedia Gamino

If you’re like most people, you enjoy good music from time to time. But when your neighbor blasts their favorite tunes while you’re trying to sleep, study, or enjoy some quiet time, it’s beyond annoying—it’s disruptive. When an individual disrupts you and your neighbors with loud noise and commotion over an extended period, they are in breach of peace—or disturbing the peace, in Wisconsin it is called “disorderly conduct.” While the laws that define disturbing the peace may vary from state to state, disturbing the peace may be a criminal offense or municipal ticket in Wisconsin.

Laws that punish those who disturb the peace are meant to discourage offensive acts that could annoy, harm, or threaten others.

Actions Considered to Be Disturbing the Peace

Acts of disturbing the peace include:

  • Playing loud music at night, especially if you live in an apartment building or have neighbors that live close by.
  • Fighting someone in public (except for self-defense), or challenging someone to a fight in a public space.
  • Yelling obscenities in a public setting, or using offensive language or fighting words.
  • Public intoxication
  • Knocking and banging on objects.
  • Resisting a lawful arrest.
  • Allowing excessive dog barking.

Actions That Aren’t Considered to Be Disturbing the Peace

  • Horseplay
  • Making a rude gesture to someone.
  • Embarrassing another person.
  • Annoying someone.
  • Accidentally bumping into someone.

What Can You Do as a Victim of Someone Who Disturbs the Peace?

If you’re dealing with a neighbor who’s disturbing the peace by frequently playing loud music at inappropriate times or constantly making loud noises, and you may be able to resolve the issue amicably, you might consider having a conversation with them. If the situation escalates, however, remove yourself right away.

What Is the Punishment for Disturbing the Peace?

Disturbing the peace in Wisconsin is a Class B misdemeanor, so if you’re convicted you could face jail time—up to 90 days, and/or up to a fine of $1,000. An attorney may be able to argue for a more favorable sentence, especially if you’re a first-time offender, so it’s critical that you have one.

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About a Disturbing the Peace Charge?

If you’ve been charged with disturbing the peace, call our office at 414-383-6700 to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced lawyers who can provide the guidance you need.

 By Attorney Tedia Gamino                                                                                 

By |2022-11-19T09:25:24-06:00January 17th, 2023|Criminal Law, Municipal Law|Comments Off on Can You Go to Jail for Playing Loud Music?

Municipal Tickets for Health Code Violations

Municipal Tickets for Health Code Violations - Carlos Gamino

By Attorney Carlos Gamino

If you’re like many restaurateurs and other small business owners, you’re always on the lookout for health code violations – but what should you do if you receive a ticket for one? Here’s what you need to know.

What is a Municipal Ticket for a Health Code Violation?

In some cases, restaurants and other small business owners receive municipal tickets for health code violations. The health code is designed to protect consumers, so the state takes violations pretty seriously. A municipal ticket, which is an alternative to a criminal offense, is one way that officials can ensure that businesses comply with the health code. These tickets tell you the specific violation charged against you.

What to Do if You Get a Municipal Ticket for a Health Code Violation?

If you receive a citation, you can answer the charge by entering a plea. Your citation will have a court date listed on it – but you don’t have to go to court if you pay your fine on or before your court date, or if you enter a plea online, by mail or by fax. You can plead guilty, not guilty or no contest to the charge against you. (Juvenile citations are different, and so are those that involve drunk driving charges. You must appear in court for those.)

As with anything else in the legal system, you can have an attorney represent you.

Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About a Municipal Ticket for a Health Code Violation?

If you’ve received a municipal ticket for a health code violation – or for any other reason – we may be able to help you. Call us at 414-383-6700 for a free consultation. We can answer your questions about the process and what to do next, as well as the consequences you may face for pleading guilty or no contest. We’ll also help you determine the best path forward.

Carlos Gamino

By |2021-07-17T11:35:24-05:00August 3rd, 2020|Criminal Law, Municipal Law|Comments Off on Municipal Tickets for Health Code Violations


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