Breach of Peace in the First Degree
To be found guilty of committing a breach of the peace in the first degree in the state of Connecticut a prosecutor must prove that with an intent to cause inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk of inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm, a person places a nonfunctional imitation of an explosive or incendiary device or imitation hazardous substance in a public place discovered by another person.
So What Constitutes a Hazardous Substance?
A hazardous substance means any physical, chemical, biological or radiological substance that in a certain quantity may cause or significantly contribute to an increased chance of death or serious irreversible or incapacitating illness, or pose a serious hazard to human health.
What is a Public Place Under This Statute?
A public place means any area that used or held out for use by the public whether owned or operated by public or private interests.
You can commit breach of the peace in the first degree with a specific intent to inconvenience, annoy, or alarm someone or by recklessly causing inconvenience, annoyance or alarm. Currently, inconvenience, annoyance or an alarm don’t have a definition in the statute.
Breach of the peace in the first degree is a Class D felony that carries a potential penalty of 1-5 years in prison.
Breach of Peace in the Second Degree
A person can be found guilty of breach of the peace in the second degree when that person fits the criteria for assault in the first degree and, in addition:
- Engages in fighting or threatening behavior in a public place.
- Assaults or strikes another person.
- Threatens to commit any crime against another person or against another person’s property.
- Publicly exhibits, distributes, posts, or advertises any offensive, indecent or abusive matter concerning any person.
- Uses obscene language or makes an obscene gesture.
- Creates a public and hazardous condition without a license to do so.
Both breach of peace in the first degree and breach of peace in the second degree are considered felonies. If convicted of breach of peace in the first degree, you face a prison sentence of 1-5 years. For breach of peace in the second degree, you face up to six months in jail.