Does Public Urination Go on Your Record? – Criminal Defense Attorney

Does Public Urination Go on Your Record

Does Public Urination Go on Your Record? – If the M is Circled on Your Promise to Appear then it is a Misdemeanor

Details how a person should approach a Public Urination Charge in Downtown Fullerton


When Does Public Urination Go on Your Record?

I am often asked the question of When Does Public Urination Go on Your Record?

It ONLY Goes on Your record After a Misdemeanor Conviction. 

Some people think that it goes on your record at the moment you are given the ticket. This is not true. There are law in this nation and the state must prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt or you admit guilt before they can put a misdemeanor on your record. There are several burdens of proof.

Being Charged is Not the Same as being Guilty. 

Many people are charged with crimes in the criminal court system.  However, being charged does not mean a person did the crime. It only means there was a suspicion something happen. the same thing applies with a public urination charge as well. The Officer will write a citation to send you to court.  The court is where Guilt is determined. 

Conviction of a Public urination Will Result in a Misdemeanor

Officers will often say to show up to court as it just falls under the category of minor offenses. However people are surprised they are dealing with a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor will stay on your criminal record.

A Misdemeanor Will Show Up on Background Check for Employment.

misdemeanor conviction will happen when a person decides not to fight the charge and goes into court the first day and pleads guilty to the misdemeanor

Your criminal record will follow you everywhere you go. This criminal record is run every time you apply for a job. In addition to that, there are many job applications that ask if you have been convicted of a misdemeanor or any kind of crime. A conviction for a Public Urination in this since will cause trouble and hinder your ability to get a job.

Different Jurisdictions Will Categorize Public Urination  as a Misdemeanor while Others say it is an Infraction

Not every state has a law making it a crime.

Some states do not criminalize it like the state of Oregon where the appeal court ruled that it was not a crime.

 In a majority opinion, the court wrote that urine isn’t specifically mentioned in the state’s offensive littering law. What’s more, it’s not “discarded” or “deposited” from the body, the ruling said.

“One discharges urine, rather than discarding it,” it said.

It is not a crime in San Francisco, CA for public policy reasons, 

“We will not prosecute cases involving quality-of-life crimes,” DA Chesa Boudin said. “Crimes such as public camping, offering or soliciting sex, public urination, blocking a sidewalk, etc., should not and will not be prosecuted. Many of these crimes are still being prosecuted; we have a long way to go to decriminalize poverty and homelessness.”

But it could be a crime in other cities like the city of Fullerton in California up the reading of the town’s local ordinance.

7.110.010   Public excretion.
   No person shall urinate or defecate in a:
   A.    Public place;
   B.    Place open to the public or exposed to public view; or
   C.    Private place entered without consent of the owner, his agent, or the person in lawful possession thereof.
   This section shall not apply to urination or defecation in any fixture provided for such purposes in any bathroom, restroom, dressing room, or similar facility. (Ord. 2343 (part), 1981).
7.110.030   Penalty.
   Any violation of this chapter is a misdemeanor. (Ord. 2825 § 20, 1992).
Arrest Warrant in Orange County
Public Urination citations can be either an infraction or misdemeanor

Why can’t I pee in public places?

It is more political than anything else. You are not committing a crime of the century. Actually, it is more of a crime of youthful indiscretion. Some people prefer to think of it as “when you gotta go you gotta go” However, police officers are under pressure to clean up the city and keep citizens happy. Nobody likes out of towners coming into town and pissing all over the place. So as a result they have started charging with Public Urination as misdemeanors which leads it to go on people’s records.



Misdeameanor conviction

Lots of employers will ask potential new hires about their criminal background.

Do I need a lawyer for Public Urination Case?

Most likely NOT Unless it is charged as a Misdemeanor and even if it is charged as a misdemeanor you still may not need a lawyer. 

You Do NOT Need a Lawyer if Your Public Urination Charged as an infraction

If your offense is charged as an infraction then this is good news.

Infraction Charges DO NOT go on your record and will only result in a fine. 

Offenses that are charged as an infraction will not end up on your criminal record even if you plead guilty to it. You can think of an infraction as the equivalent of a traffic ticket. Traffic tickets only involve a fine and there is no potential for jail time. Whether you want professional help is only a matter of money or if you can’t show up to court yourself.  However, the opposite is true if there has been a charge of a misdemeanor.

What is the cost of a Public Urination Infraction Ticket?

The cost of an infraction public Urination ticket will differ upon the jurisdiction. The best way to find out is to go to your local courthouse and ask the clerks.  Many courthouses also list their court clerks phone number on their website and you can call them there. 

Public Urination as a Misdemeanor

Public Urination tickets can also be charged is as a misdemeanor.

Very Unlikely Chance of Jailtime Even If Convicted

This is another way to say there is potential jail time on your case. However, realistically unless you are on probation, a public urination will not result in a jail time. It is not a crime of violence and cities are only pushing arrest because residents have complained too much to their city council about public intoxication and the occasional violence that comes with drinking. 

Ignore that Thread on Reddit that Talks About Sex Registration for Public Urination

Despite what people read on Reddit, there is a very low to non existent chance that this charge will result in an indecent exposuredisorderly conduct, or mandatory registration on the sex offender registry. The biggest thing you have to worry about is the  potential for a public intoxication charge.

Whether or not you need a lawyer for your Public Urination Case will come down to where you want your case to end up.

If you want nothing but the best IE dismissal and a clean criminal record then it is advisable to find a lawyer on your case to fight the misdemeanor charge and avoid probation

Running a Specific Defense and tell Your Side of the Story 

If you wanted to present a defense saying that you relieving yourself in public is the result of a medical condition rather than alcohol consumption then you will need an attorney who is familiar with the city ordinance to fight the case. 

A Conviction for a Public Urination with An existing Criminal history may not be a Big Deal 

It really depends on your goal and the type of person you are. To some people, a criminal record does not matter. Lots of people already have criminal records in their background. If that’s the case then one more public urination misdemeanor will not matter much unless you are planning to clean out all your criminal record with expungements. If this is the case then it will be one more case you need to expunge so you can say you do not have any convictions on your record. 

Having a Clean Criminal Record Puts more at Stake. 

However, if you have a clean record then you may want to think twice about going in and taking a misdemeanor for your record. The privilege of having a clean record is that you can answer “No” in response to the question if you have ever been convicted of a crime in response to a misdemeanor crime. If you are charged with a misdemeanor public urination and have a clean criminal record then it is important that you get professional help for your case.

Skip Hiring an Attorney if You’re Only Worried about Jail. 

If your only goal is not to go to jail regardless then you won’t need the help of an attorney on your case. The chances are very high that you will be given a conviction and probation and you will go home with no jail time. Assuming you are not on probation the chances are you will be sent home with a fine. There is a very little chance that you will need to register as a sex offender and get probation with lewdness terms.  A criminal defense attorney will not be necessary to avoid these penalties. 

Does Public Urination Go on Your Record?
Public Urination stays on your record if it is prosecuted as a Misdemeanor. It’s important to check your citation to see which was circled. An “M” would mean misdemeanor and an “I” would mean infraction.

College Students and Public Urination

Pleading guilty on the first day is not advisable for college students as there are alternatives such as community service. In addition, pleading guilty to a misdeameanor may subject them to a student council administrative hearing at their schools.

student council proceeding has to do with academic integrity and fitness to be a student. However, in addition to charges of indecent exposuredisorderly conduct being a sex offenderlewdness can also trigger these proceedings. Below is an excerpt from Cal State Fullerton’s Student Council page. 


Academic Integrity isn’t the only thing our office enforces. Any of the behaviours below could also result in your referral to a member of the student conduct team:

  • Alcohol Misuse can cause many problems for students – behaviors such as underage drinking, drinking in public, drinking and driving, vandalizing property while intoxicated, engaging in fights, public urination, committing sexual assault, etc.

  • Inability to manage time or stress sometimes overwhelms students – resulting in verbal harassment, physical intimidation,  forging signatures on documents, or providing false information to the University.

  • Lack of judgment and failure to understand your responsibility to the community are easy ways to get off-track – behaviors like causing disruptions in class, in department offices, parking lots, or other public areas; possession of firearms or weapons, and allowing or encouraging midconduct from peers or guests.

  • Behavior within the campus community which violates local, state, or federal law – such as the use, possession, or sale of illegal drugs, theft, hazing, etc.

What are the problems Proving a Public Urination Case?

Many police officers will arrest a person or cite them for public urination when they think a person is relieving themselves.

Just Being in the Position Will be Enough for an Arrest but not a Conviction. 

This is independent of whether or not you were really relieving yourself or not. Most of the time the police will get it right, however, there are often times when a person will not be relieving themselves but get cited at the same time. This happens a lot when there are crowded areas and police are camping out in busy downtown areas.

Being Found in the Area Does not Mean They Have Enough Proof for a Misdemeanor Conviction. 

Police officers will know the usual spots, sit there and watch for suspicious people. Unfortunately what will happen is that people will go with friends and attempt to relieve themselves and not fully do it. When this happens an officer will roll up and cite the person.

For example, The police officer is watching John and Joe as they leave the bar. John and Joe are out drinking and it is 2am and they have left the bar and there are no restrooms. Joe goes to the garage to relieve himself and John needs to relieve himself too but hesitates. After watching Joe relieve himself, John decides to follow but only goes to unzipping his pants when he is stopped. He has not started the process yet but intends to start. The officer will light up both John an joe and cite both of them. However, only Joe is the one responsible for the crime, John has only attempted to urinate in public.

The State Must Prove You Guilty of a Misdemeanor Public Urination Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. 

Unless you admit guilt, In order to get a conviction against you for any type of misdemeanor the state will have to prove in front of 12 people that you committed a crime in front of 12 people.  This entails a burden on the system. This potential burden can be leveraged for the purpose of steering your case away from a misdemeanor. An attorney can take this leverage along with their knowledge of the local courthouse and it’s case load to get your a good deal on your case. 

  • 1) Preponderance of the evidence: A reasonable person thinks it is more likely that you are relieving yourself.
  • 2) Clear and convincing evidence: A reasonable person is pretty sure that you are relieving yourself.
  • 3) Beyond a Reasonable Doubt: There is no doubt that you are relieving yourself.
Orange County DUI - Burden of Proof
The prosecution must show guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Often times in Civil cases a preponderance of the evidence is good enough for guilt.




For more information on public urination

I got a ticket for public urination in California, they marked it as a misdemeanor. What can I expect

When you gotta go, you gotta go. What is your public urination gone wrong story


Let’s Talk About You

Let’s Talk About You Fight Your case and get Representation in Court.

Read our Reviews


Hand down the best attorney I have ever worked with!!! My friend recommended Hieu because I needed to expunge something I did when I was young and dumb. Hieu is very humble, personable, and made me feel very comfortable. He's surprisingly funny too. Something not all lawyers are / can do. His pricing is very reasonable and he updated me on everything frequently. I highly recommend him!!!!

Lila K

I had interviewed many attorneys to discuss my very unfortunate situation that was set by someone I knew. Hieu Vu was the most honest, caring, and professional attorney with compassion and empathy I ever interviewed. HE REALLY HAD A HEART. His fees were very reasonable and he will fight for you not just for your dollars but because he cares for his clients... I would strongly recommend him if you feel your life is upside down. Things happen but we learn to become better person.

Mark K

Tell Your side of the Story

There's always more to one side of a story. It's important that your site gets heard.

Other Post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest