Bob is in his home watching TV when he hears a knock on the door. It is the Police and they would like to speak to Bob. They claim that Bob is suspected of a crime and would like him to open the door (They don't have a warrant, someone just thought it may have been Bob as they saw someone who looks like Bob. Bob has been home all night.) Bob refuses and tells them to get off his property. They refuse to leave. So Bob closes his window blinds, and goes back to watching TV. The Police continue to knock on the door loudly, yelling for Bob to open the door. This enrages Bob because his favorite TV show is on and they are disturbing him from watching it in peace. So Bob opens the window blinds, and starts yelling expletives at them, telling them several times to leave his property. Bob yells so loud that his neighbors come out to look at the commotion. Police inform Bob that he is being arrested for disorderly conduct (not the crime Police originally came to the house for).

  • Can Bob be charged with disorderly conduct in this situation?
  • Does disorderly conduct have any time, place or manner restrictions?
  • Does the 1st Amendment have a higher level of protection in one's home in regards to what is "orderly" conduct?
  • How likely is it that Bob will actually be prosecuted for this criminal charge?

I'm looking for an answer that will describe the qualification of having broken disorderly conduct laws inside of a person's own home. Since this might be state specific regarding the letter of the law. Choose which ever state you wish that has the strictest wording of the law.

  • Do the police have a warrant for either Bob's arrest or to search Bob's premises?
    – hszmv
    Apr 16, 2019 at 14:49
  • No warrant, merely suspicion. Apr 16, 2019 at 16:23
  • You do know that disorderly conduct laws have nothing to do with where you are right?
    – Putvi
    Apr 17, 2019 at 18:22
  • You aren't getting it, the blocking traffic isn't location dependent.
    – Putvi
    Apr 17, 2019 at 20:33

3 Answers 3


So my answer depends heavily on a clarification. Are the Police Suspicious or do they have a warrant? This is a big difference in the two behaviors as the former is not a thing, from a strictly legal perspective, and the police should not be harrassing Bob, who doesn't want to talk to them, when they should be making calls to get a warrant (If the police think Bob is being disorderly, they will arrest him and Bob should zip it, get an attorney down to the station, and let the Lawyer yell at the cops... and the judge... and the prosecutor and whoever else...

If it's the latter case, they don't need to ask Bob to have Bob come outside... they can kick in the door and arrest Bob or remove him as part of executing the warrant. That's why you have them.

In the situation as described, it reads like there was some crime in the area and the police think Bob may have some knowledge about it (he need not have done it, they could be looking for a witness). Bob does not have to say anything to the cops as per his rights against self-incrimination, so Bob tells them he does not wish to speak to them, possibly in an irksome manner and the Police won't take no for an answer. Perhaps they really think Bob might be the criminal... this doesn't necessary mean they have evidence to arrest Bob on. Perhaps Bob was identified by a guy off of security camera footage... maybe it was Bob, or maybe it was Bob's evil twin he never knew about and Bob's been home all night Keeping Up With The Kardassians (anyone knows Bob knows he can't stand going a week without knowing what Kim and Kanye are doing). Either way, it could be enough for a search warrant but just wanting to talk without a warrant, Bob can refuse and they need to respect that. Again, it's probably a bad faith arrest, but the street is not the place to have that fight... save it for the courts.

  • You can't kick a door in for that.
    – Putvi
    Apr 16, 2019 at 15:55
  • I updated the question to clarify point of the warrant and that it wasn't actually Bob committing a crime. Just merely suspected of one. Apr 16, 2019 at 16:07

short answer yes he will be charged/arrested. and VERY unlikely he will be prosecuted unless the DA is trying to punish him or is trying for another conviction and wants to be able to say he was arrested for disorderly conduct to help with his other conviction.

long answer is, you would never get into this situation. If the police suspected a criminal was on the premises, even if it was bobs brother who was being disorderly they would enter claiming exigent circumstances, and everyone would go to the station. secondly the second he yells out his window enough to alert his neighbors he is technically disturbing the peace, and finally discretion in policing allows the police to

  • 1, essentially ignore the fact they are trespassing in pursuit of the law.
  • 2, arrest him for whatever the hell they please the second they can call it reasonable.
  • 3, place the burden of proof on you to prove bobs innocence because in courts it is generally assumed the guilty party has more impetus to lie, so in a cops word against yours. you would go to jail.

Yes it is a crime no matter where it occurs. What part of the law specifies that it is not a crime when at the person's house?

This question is ridiculous.

The police have the right to speak to someone about a crime. I know people on here will complain about the short answer, but its blatantly obvious.

  • Look at that. Someone down voted, but can't show that I am wrong.
    – Putvi
    Apr 16, 2019 at 16:10
  • 3
    The police have the right to speak to someone about a crime. And people have the right to tell police to kick rocks and go get a warrant. So your answer is clearly off base. Furthermore, your comments and opinions aren't anymore useful to answering the question.. Apr 16, 2019 at 16:15
  • No you don't have the right to tell them to kick rocks. Where is this coming from? Have you ever spoken to the police? You can say you don't want to answer, but they have the right to ask a question. What part of the law are you basing this on that would imply it depends on where it happens or that the police can not ask questions?
    – Putvi
    Apr 16, 2019 at 16:22
  • 1
    1st and 5th amendment of the United States Constitution.. :mic drop: Apr 16, 2019 at 16:24
  • 2
    I think the disconnect in communication is that police can ask you about a crime but you have no obligation to open the door and listen to them. Apr 17, 2019 at 19:06

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