Our public order offence lawyers win cases – at trial or by getting them dropped
Our public order offence solicitors do not simply accept the police view of the case. Police often make mistakes about the context or about who was to blame in a situation, and they even sometimes lie.
These cases can affect a person's mental health, family life, and career. Our job is to fight for you, using all of our skill and experience to get you the right result.
Starting a criminal case after an argument can seem excessive
Being accused of public order offence is frustrating. There can be an immediate fear of damage to a person's career or even his or her liberty.
People who are accused can feel injustice when a false allegation has been taken seriously by police, especially if the evidence against them is just another person's word. Sometimes racism is also alleged. which makes the allegation even more stressful.
These cases are often about somebody's words, not what they actually did, which can feel bizarre. In some cases, police investigate a person just because they were at the scene when someone else was violent or aggressive, even if the person didn't actually do anything wrong.
Police also investigate based on online comments or mobile phone messages, even if they weren't meant seriously at the time. Being targeted as a result of a social media post can feel like an intrusion on free speech. Searching for a public order offence solicitor is not an experience most people expected to have.
Public order cases are often poorly investigated
When the police become involved after a dispute, they make a decision about who is to blame. They often base it on who called them first or whether anyone has injuries. This isn't a reliable way of getting to the truth. This means they often wrongly take the aggressor's side.
In spite of how most people regard the work of the police, simply trusting them to exonerate you can be a dangerous thing to do. They don't have enough resources and sadly often lack experience.
One injustice of public order cases is that the major consequences that a conviction can have are often way out of proportion to the seriousness of what is often a fairly low-level allegation.
If racism is part of the allegation, it often sends the police and CPS into overdrive against the suspect, even if there is no real evidence to support it.
These cases are also low-priority for police, which means there can be delays before they are concluded. This can increase the stress felt by the person who has been accused.
Having a good legal team makes a big difference
You don't have to feel like you are hostage to the arbitrary opinion of the police, and have to just put your hopes on them getting it right. There are ways of actually influencing how it turns out.
A good start is having specialist public order offence solicitors representing you. This will reduce the feeling that you are in a dangerous situation which is just drifting along without being managed.
Motivated and experienced lawyers put pressure on police and the CPS to resolve the case informally without a criminal record or court hearings.
They also build your defence from the ground up. This means looking at the weaknesses in the prosecution case, the backgrounds of witnesses, and all available evidence sources, especially ones the police have missed.
Instructing specialist public order offence solicitors also ensures you get the best court representation through experienced specialist barristers. This way you have the best chance of a not guilty verdict if it goes to court.
A selection of some of our solicitors' cases:
Not guilty verdict - client exonerated
Businessmen cleared after case thrown out of court.
Our clients were two local businessmen who were accused of attacking a taxi driver after an argument over the fare. They were found not guilty after trial. The case was thrown out by the judge after Mary Monson cross-examined the prosecution witness.CriminalAssault
Our lawyers get public order cases stopped and won
The public order offence lawyers at Mary Monson Solicitors have been defending these cases for decades. We know what works to get results.
We start with dialogue with police, making it absolutely clear that we expect our client's case to be treated fairly. We then continue with persistent pressure for non-criminal alternatives to prosecution to be considered, such as the case being discontinued, or so-called 'restorative justice'. In many cases we also make it clear to the CPS before they decide whether to proceed that they will face major opposition at court if they do.
While this is going on, we will be doing a full investigation into what actually happened so that we are fully prepared to fight. This may include obtaining CCTV, finding defence witnesses, investigating the police's witnesses and even police officers' records.
We work with top public order specialist barristers throughout England & Wales, who have proven track records of winning.
Important things you should do or avoid doing
Do make sure you have a proactive lawyer early on. Public order cases can often be stopped if there is early intervention. It is harder once the case is further down the line.
Don't contact complainants or witnesses. It's unlikely to make things better, it nearly always makes it worse, and you could risk being accused of another offence. If there is a new ongoing issue caused by the other party, contact the police.
Don't write any messages of apology to anyone involved. They could be misrepresented as a confession of guilt.
Don't rely on police to get to the bottom of what has happened and exonerate you. The police do not have time or resources to look at all the angles in a way which could benefit you. They usually take a simplistic approach based on dealing with the case efficiently.
Don't assume it will all be OK without you being proactive. Justice works for people who work to get it. If anyone advises you that it's just a waiting game, this might not be accurate.
Exceptional win rate - 72% of our clients win their cases
Our criminal solicitors fight to win our clients’ cases and the proof is our results. Where a client doesn’t admit the allegation we win at trial or get the case dropped beforehand in 72% of cases.*
We listen carefully
We listen to you and treat your situation as if we were in your shoes. We don’t hire staff unless they have this mindset. Every case is supervised by one of the firm’s directors.
We investigate thoroughly
We do our own thorough investigation and find the best way to present your case to the police, to the prosecutor, or finally to the jury. This means phone, letters, and aggressive advocacy on your behalf at every stage.
Our criminal solicitors never give up
We never give up, and we fight until we get the result. That can mean early mornings, late nights, and commitment to go the extra mile.
* 72% of clients' cases resulted in case being discontinued at investigation or court stage, or not guilty verdict after trial. Data from all criminal clients between 02.2017 and 08.2019 - excludes cases where the client admitted the offence and chose to plead guilty.
No-tricks fixed-fee pricing
We can usually offer a fixed fee instalment plan so you can plan for the expense, and so you can fund your case in stages while it is continuing.
Once we have an idea of what kind of case you are facing and what work that will be necessary, we will then be able to provide you with a fixed fee quote. This means that you know before you commit how much your case will cost.
Representation at interview or court hearings
Analysing the evidence & investigating
Conferences with your lawyers
Negotiating with police or prosecutors
Free case review - what do I get and how does it work?
Free time with a lawyer
You get dedicated time with one of our specialist criminal solicitors on the phone or in person, with no obligation, for free.
When we’re talking with you, we promise to be always non-judgmental and sensitive to what you’re going through.
Our criminal solicitors start by asking you questions so we can understand what’s going on, and we listen carefully to what you tell us.
How long will my free case review last?
In more serious or difficult situations we may need an hour or two in person to go through things with you properly.
Less serious cases
In some cases which are less serious or complex, it may be ten or twenty minutes on the phone.
Unable to help
If it’s obvious straight away that we wouldn’t be able to help, we’ll tell you straight away and point you in the right direction to find lawyers who can help.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you can't find the answer you’re looking for, contact our leading Criminal Defence Solicitors
Will a public order case be dropped if the other person makes a retraction or says to police they don't want to go ahead with it?
Perhaps, but not necessarily. Several public order offences which are about disorder in public places, so if there is CCTV evidence or other witness evidence the police and CPS may still go ahead. Having a proactive public order offence lawyer in this situation becomes very important.
Should I accept a caution for a public order offence?
This is not a simple answer. A caution is not a criminal conviction, but it does create a criminal record, which will be disclosable on some types of DBS criminal record check for several years. A caution is usually preferable to a conviction at court, but for anyone in a career or other position of responsibility, such as caring for children or vulnerable people, a caution is to be avoided.
Does a Public Order Act case have to go to court?
Public order offences are among the most common cases that police deal with every day. Some investigations result in no further action being taken by police. Involving a Public Order Act specialist early can be the difference between a case going to court and a case being stopped without even going to the CPS for a charging decision.
What is a harassment warning for a public order case?
In a case where you and the complainant know each other such as a neighbour dispute, the police may consider giving a harassment warning to you or both you and the complainant. This is not something that would be likely to show up as a criminal record as a result of a DBS check. It is a way of the police making it clear for their records that a warning has been given. It's only likely to be referred to if there are any further incidents or complaints. It is not usually a welcome outcome, but it avoids a caution or a conviction, which makes it worth considering carefully if offered.
What is restorative justice?
Restorative justice is a phrase used to describe police overseeing contact between a complainant and a suspect, sometimes in the form of a letter, to resolve the matter. Sometimes this may take the form of a letter of apology, or even a meeting, although meetings between the two parties are risky and need to be managed carefully if there is no alternative. Restorative justice procedures usually avoid the matter having any formal outcome, but this varies between police forces and checks should be made before agreeing to the process. Confusingly, some police forces call restorative justice 'community resolution' and even sometimes use each term to mean slightly different things.
What is a community resolution?
Community resolution is a term which means police trying to broker a settlement between a suspect and a complainant going forward to end a grievance between them. It will sometimes be offered in a neighbour dispute case or in a case where there has been property damage, or any other type of disturbance or public order allegation.
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We'll get back to you as soon as possible. We are happy to speak to you if you have a query, and either have a free consultation on the phone or in person if necessary.