Can I Be Publicly Intoxicated in New Jersey?

Picture of keys next to drinking glasses

Thinking about cracking open a cold one with the boys while grilling some steaks at the public park? If you live in New Jersey, you might want to reconsider these thoughts. Depending on the location, event, or even holiday, you could unwittingly break public intoxication or open container laws, landing you in hot water with law enforcement. Here’s what you need to know about drinking in public while enjoying a day out in New Jersey.

Open Container Laws

If you decide to open a beer while operating a motor vehicle, you can be pulled over and arrested by law enforcement. Under Title 39 of New Jersey’s motor vehicle code, motor vehicle operators are prohibited from having opened or unsealed alcohol containers in their vehicles. Convictions could include fines and community service. To avoid these charges, do not open or leave unsealed containers of alcohol in your vehicle. Your safest bet is to place your unopened alcohol in the trunk of your car or away from the driver’s cabin of the vehicle. In addition, do not discard open containers on the sidewalk as this is also prohibited under New Jersey law.

Public Intoxication

This might surprise you but under New Jersey’s NJSA 26:2B-26, municipalities to make laws regarding public intoxication. This, however, does that mean you won’t be arrested for other behavior that is a result of your intoxication. In your intoxication state, you might physically attack someone and could be arrested for assault. Other charges that can crop up due to public intoxication include DUI, disturbing the peace, or engaging in lewd behavior.

If you’re facing alcohol-related charges, get in contact with an experienced DUI attorney. The Law Offices of Dennis E. Block can offer their legal guidance and help you better understand New Jersey’s alcohol laws. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.