As reported by Felice Freyer in the May 7, 2012 edition of the Providence Journal, a fight broke out at local Providence nightclub. Five (5) people were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. This incident is the latest episode involving violence at nightclubs. Earlier this month, an incident at Monet Lounge involved numerous people and multiple injuries. On Easter weekend, at Level II, six (6) people were seriously injured. As a result of these incidents, a bill has been introduced in the Rhode Island General Assembly to prevent persons under the age of twenty-one (21) from admission into nightclubs.
Pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws 11-45-1, disorderly conduct is very broadly defined to include:
(1) Engages in fighting or threatening, or in violent or tumultuous behavior;
(2) In a public place or near a private residence that he or she has no right to occupy, disturbs another person by making loud and unreasonable noise which under the circumstances would disturb a person of average sensibilities;
(3) Directs at another person in a public place offensive words which are likely to provoke a violent reaction on the part of the average person so addressed;
(4) Alone or with others, obstructs a highway, street, sidewalk, railway, waterway, building entrance, elevator, aisle, stairway, or hallway to which the public or a substantial group of the public has access or any other place ordinarily used for the passage of persons, vehicles, or conveyances;
(5) Engages in conduct which obstructs or interferes physically with a lawful meeting, procession, or gathering;
(6) Enters upon the property of another and for a lascivious purpose looks into an occupied dwelling or other building on the property through a window or other opening; or
(7) Who without the knowledge or consent of the individual, looks for a lascivious purpose through a window, or any other opening into an area in which another would have a reasonable expectation of privacy, including, but not limited to, a restroom, locker room, shower, changing room, dressing room, bedroom, or any other such private area, not withstanding any property rights the individual may have in the location in which the private area is located.
If convicted, the penalties include imprisonment for a term of not more than six (6) months, or fined not more than five hundred dollars ($500), or both.
Pursuant to R.I.G.L. 12-7-10, resisting arrest is defined as it shall be unlawful for any person to use force or any weapon in resisting a legal or an illegal arrest by a peace officer, if the person has reasonable ground to believe that he or she is being arrested and that the arrest is being made by a peace officer. If convicted, the penalties include a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500) or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or by both fine and imprisonment.