breach of the peace

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Breach of the Peace

A comprehensive term encompassing acts or conduct that seriously endanger or disturb public peace and order.

A breach of the peace was a common-law offense, but is presently governed by statute in many states. It is frequently defined as constituting a form of Disorderly Conduct. Examples include using abusive or obscene language in a public place, resisting a lawful arrest, and trespassing or damaging property when accompanied by violence.

Statutes commonly require that conduct constituting a breach of the peace must be clearly a type of misbehavior resulting in public unrest or disturbance. As an example, a prostitute who solicited men walking by on a public street from her window was found guilty of breaching the peace, but a man who raised his voice to a police officer while the officer was issuing a ticket to him was not guilty of the same offense.

A breach of the peace is synonymous with a disturbance of the peace. Jurisdictions that do not have a specific statutory provision for the offense may punish it as a form of disorderly conduct. The usual penalty imposed is either a fine, imprisonment, or both.

breach of the peace

n. any act which disturbs the public or even one person. It can include almost any criminal act causing fear or attempting intimidation, such as displaying a pistol or shouting inappropriately. (See: breach)

See: brawl, fracas, infraction, outbreak, outburst, riot

breach of the peace

the crime of behaving in a disorderly fashion causing harm or likely to cause harm or generally disturbing the peace. Its wide ambit can raise human rights points.

BREACH OF THE PEACE. A violation of public order; the offence of disturbing the public peace. One guilty of this offence may be held to bail for his good behaviour. An act of public indecorum is also a breach of the peace. The remedy for this offence is by indictment. Vide Pace,

References in periodicals archive ?
Moreover, the Official Comment does not clearly indicate how much of an active role--if any--an officer may take in a repossession before a breach of the peace occurs.
Brayne and David Ramage, 21, from Manchester, were cleared of charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm along with malicious damage and breach of the peace.
Harrison, whose uncle Jack McGill was found dead in woods over the weekend, denies further charges of causing a breach of the peace at his home and resisting arrest.
In all of the circumstances, this case meets the required tests of Scots law and there can be no result other than a conviction for breach of the peace," the sheriff said.
Sentence was deferred for reports when McGill, of Govan, appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court and admitted assault and breach of the peace.
The former 1st Royal Tank Regiment squaddie was just 17 when he first got slapped with a breach of the peace order and a pounds 25 fine for hanging around and causing trouble.
A higher percentage of suspects are being arrested for other more serious offences than breach of the peace.
NAKED rambler, Stephen Gough, appeared in the nude in court yesterday as he denied committing a breach of the peace while on his marathon walk, the length of Britain.
Naked rambler Stephen Gough appeared in the nude in court yesterday as he denied committing a breach of the peace while on his marathon walk the length of Britain.
Cho appeared in private at Edinburgh Sheriff Court last month charged with committing a breach of the peace in May.
He got a two-year football banning order for breach of the peace aggravated by bigotry.
A FOOTBALL player is due to appear in court today charged in connection with a sectarian breach of the peace.