State v. Love

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: 06-03-2015
  • Case #: A151941
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Garrett, J. for the Court; DeVore, P.J.; & Ortega, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Under the statute governing disorderly conduct, ORS 166.025, "public" refers to something that affects "the people as an organized community" or "the people as a whole," not a "public place."

Defendant appeals a conviction of second-degree disorderly conduct. Defendant argues that the trial court should have granted his motion for acquittal on the disorderly conduct charge because the state failed to prove that Defendant's conduct posed a risk of "public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm". Defendant was involved in a fight with four other people, who all knew each other, in a private residence. Based on the plain language of the statute, "public" in the disorderly conduct statute means "the people as an organized community" or "the people as a whole" – not "public place." "Public place" is used and defined in other portions of the statute; the Court infers that the legislature intended "public" to mean something other than "public place." The State was required to prove that Defendant recklessly created a risk of public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm. Because the altercation took place in a private residence among a group who was acquainted, the Court says "the mere fact that several people were present is insufficient to prove the defendant would have been aware of a risk of his conduct causing 'public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm.'" Defendant also appeals the judgment to pay restitution. However, the restitution judgment was ordered in a supplemental judgment, and Defendant did not amend the appeal to include that judgment. The restitution judgment is not properly before the Court. Conviction for second-degree disorderly conduct reversed, otherwise affirmed.

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