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Texas

Vernon's Texas Statutes and Codes Annotated. Penal Code. Title 9. Offenses Against Public Order and Decency. Chapter 42. Disorderly Conduct and Related Offenses. 42.01. Disorderly Conduct

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: TX PENAL 42.01

Citation: V.T.C.A., Penal Code 42.01


Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 02/2011

Summary:   Although it is illegal to discharge a firearm in a public place, or across a public road, this statute makes it an affirmative defense that the shooter had a reasonable fear of bodily injury to himself or to another by a "dangerous wild animal," which term includes but is not limited to a chimpanzee, orangutan, gorilla, lion, tiger, or bear. 


Statute in Full:

(a) A person commits an offense if he intentionally or knowingly:

(1) uses abusive, indecent, profane, or vulgar language in a public place, and the language by its very utterance tends to incite an immediate breach of the peace;

(2) makes an offensive gesture or display in a public place, and the gesture or display tends to incite an immediate breach of the peace;

(3) creates, by chemical means, a noxious and unreasonable odor in a public place;

(4) abuses or threatens a person in a public place in an obviously offensive manner;

(5) makes unreasonable noise in a public place other than a sport shooting range, as defined by Section 250.001, Local Government Code, or in or near a private residence that he has no right to occupy;

(6) fights with another in a public place;

(7) discharges a firearm in a public place other than a public road or a sport shooting range, as defined by Section 250.001, Local Government Code;

(8) displays a firearm or other deadly weapon in a public place in a manner calculated to alarm;

(9) discharges a firearm on or across a public road;

(10) exposes his anus or genitals in a public place and is reckless about whether another may be present who will be offended or alarmed by his act; or

(11) for a lewd or unlawful purpose:

(A) enters on the property of another and looks into a dwelling on the property through any window or other opening in the dwelling;

(B) while on the premises of a hotel or comparable establishment, looks into a guest room not the person's own through a window or other opening in the room; or

(C) while on the premises of a public place, looks into an area such as a restroom or shower stall or changing or dressing room that is designed to provide privacy to a person using the area.

(b) It is a defense to prosecution under Subsection (a)(4) that the actor had significant provocation for his abusive or threatening conduct.

(c) For purposes of this section:

(1) an act is deemed to occur in a public place or near a private residence if it produces its offensive or proscribed consequences in the public place or near a private residence; and

(2) a noise is presumed to be unreasonable if the noise exceeds a decibel level of 85 after the person making the noise receives notice from a magistrate or peace officer that the noise is a public nuisance.

(d) An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor unless committed under Subsection (a)(7) or (a)(8), in which event it is a Class B misdemeanor.

(e) It is a defense to prosecution for an offense under Subsection (a)(7) or (9) that the person who discharged the firearm had a reasonable fear of bodily injury to the person or to another by a dangerous wild animal as defined by Section 822.101, Health and Safety Code.

CREDIT(S)

Acts 1973, 63rd Leg., p. 883, ch. 399, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1974. Amended by Acts 1977, 65th Leg., p. 181, ch. 89, §§ 1, 2, eff. Aug. 29, 1977; Acts 1983, 68th Leg., p. 4641, ch. 800, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1983; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 145, § 2, eff. Aug. 26, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 900, § 1.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1994; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 318, § 14, eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 54, § 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2001; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 389, § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

 



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