Montana Disorderly Conduct Laws

The precise definition of disorderly conduct varies from state to state; however, in almost every state there is a laws that make it a crime to be drunk in public, to disturb the peace, or to make unreasonably loud noise in public places. Montana's disorderly conduct law prohibits fighting, impeding traffic, and disturbing lawful public gatherings, among other acts that disturb the peace. The chart below outlines Montana's disorderly conduct law.

Code Section

Montana Code section 45-8-101: Disorderly Conduct

What's Prohibited?

Knowingly disturbing the peace by:
  • Quarreling, challenging to fight, or fighting
  • Making loud or unusual noises
  • Using threatening, profane, or abusive language
  • Rendering vehicular or pedestrian traffic impassable
  • Rendering the free passage way to public or private places impassable
  • Disturbing or disrupting any lawful assembly or public meeting
  • Transmitting a false report or warning of a fire or other catastrophe in a place where its occurrence would endanger human life
  • Creating a hazardous or physically offensive condition by any act that serves no legitimate purpose, or
  • Transmitting a false report or warning of an impending explosion in a place where its occurrence would endanger human life

Penalties

Disorderly conduct is generally punishable by a fine of up to $100, and/or imprisonment in the county jail for up to ten days. However, offenders convicted for transmitting a false warning of an impending explosion are punished with a fine of up to $1,000, and/or imprisonment in the county jail for up to one year.

Failure to Disperse

It is also illegal to fail to disperse from engaging in disorderly conduct. Where two or more people are engaged in disorderly conduct in Montana, a peace officer, judge, or mayor may order the participants to disperse. A person who purposefully refuses or knowingly fails to obey such an order commits the offense of failure to disperse. A conviction for failing to disperse is punishable by a fine of up to $100, and/or up to 10 days in jail.

Related Crimes in Montana

In Montana, there are also several others laws, besides the state's disorderly conduct statute, that prohibit disturbing the peace. For example, it is illegal to riot, incite a riot, engage in civil disorder, or to create a public nuisance.

Additional Resources

State laws change frequently. For case specific information regarding Montana's disorderly conduct laws contact a local criminal defense lawyer.

Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney

Contact a qualified attorney.