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How Not to Get Arrested This St. Patrick's Day Weekend

March 13, 2015

Come Saturday morning in Pittsburgh, everyone will be Irish.

While St. Patrick’s Day isn’t technically until March 17, Pittsburgh’s annual parade commences at 10 a.m. Saturday, when the green beer will be flowing, girls in “Kiss Me I’m Irish” T-shirts will be wooing, and many will be asking themselves and others, “Where’s the closest public bathroom?”

Regardless of whether you’re hitting the St. Patrick’s Day parade or attending a more private kegs and eggs event, please note that, whatever your plans, you don’t want them to end with a need to call me (i.e., Your Friendly Neighborhood Pittsburgh Criminal Defense Attorney).

And trust this Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer when he tells you: Plenty of St. Patrick’s Day revelers find themselves in need of legal representation following such celebrations.

While DUI defense is a focus of my practice, I don’t want anyone reading this blog to think for a second that drinking and driving is the only charge that can get you into hot water while you’re getting your Irish on.

I applaud those folks who plan ahead, select a designated driver, arrange for a car pool, a cab or for a ride home thanks to the fine folks at the Port Authority of Allegheny County.

But if you’re partying it up downtown, beer in hand, you could be charged with an open container violation.

You aforementioned woo girls? If you get too rowdy, you could be charged with public drunkenness.

Spill a beer on someone and get into a shoving match? That could mean a citation for harassment or simple assault. Can’t find that public bathroom and decide to make Mother Nature your commode?

Then you could face a public urination charge.

And though St. Patrick’s Day is one dominated by green, if you burn one in public and get caught holding, you could celebrate your Irish heritage with a marijuana possession charge.

Being a Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer, all I am saying is this: Be careful if you’re partying it up in Pittsburgh during this St. Patrick’s Day weekend.

Because, if you rely on the luck of the Irish, you might later be depending on the kindness and experience of a Pittsburgh Criminal Defense Attorney like me.

Getting arrested is the quickest way to ruin your fun, and the pain of the event will go on and on. City officials and police officers are determined to keep Pittsburgh as clean and welcoming as possible, and that means being strict in the enforcement of laws. Some of these charges I have mentioned can lead to jail sentences and hefty fines, meaning your couple-hundred-dollar spend for the holiday weekend could become a couple-thousand-dollar spend in the coming weeks.

Oh, and don’t fight the cops if you do get arrested. Assault on a police officer is an even worse charge with matching penalties. If you do get busted, go along with what the officers tell you.

Any kind of a criminal offense in Pennsylvania can subject you to a very harsh penalty and a severe consequence for your future. Not only will you have to pay a huge amount of fines but may also have to experience a substantial period of jail time.

If you establish a serious criminal record, it will put your entire life at stake. These records not only affect your academic reputation, but also endanger your entire career as a whole. Such records are accessible to the public and may also be available to your future employers so it might take a toll on your job opportunities too. Therefore, try not to get caught up in such complex situations.

And by chance, if you really get stuck in such dire circumstances, immediately get in touch with an experienced and skilled Pittsburgh Criminal Defense Attorney who can guide you with the right legal advice.

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