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When would a party be disruptive enough to illegally disturb the peace? (NRS 203.010)
“Every person who shall maliciously and willfully disturb the peace or quiet of any neighborhood or person or family by loud or unusual noises, tumultuous and offensive conduct, threatening, traducing (to cause humiliation or disgrace to by making malicious statements), quarreling, challenging to fight, or fighting is guilty of a misdemeanor.” In Nevada all misdemeanors are punishable by up to six months in the county jail and/or a fine of $1,000. (NRS 193.120).

As one can see, the definition of disturbing the peace is fairly broad. At the very least a police officer at a party could easily make the determination that disturbing the peace is occurring and break up the party, and possibly make arrests. In Nevada, one is not entitled to a jury trial when charged with a misdemeanor; therefore, a defendant has to prove his innocence to a Judge.

What can I do if strangers ‘crash’ my party?
Any person who, under circumstances not amounting to a burglary, (a) goes upon the land or into the building of another with intent to vex or annoy the owner or occupant, or to commit any unlawful act; or (b) willfully goes or remains upon any land or in any building after having been warned by the owner or the occupant thereof not to trespass, is guilty of a misdemeanor.”

So, if the trespasser is annoying the owner or occupant, or is warned by the owner or the occupant not to trespass then the owner or occupant can call the police and have the trespasser removed from the party. The implication is that if the trespasser is annoying a guest or a guest tells the trespasser to leave, then the trespasser is not guilty of a trespass.

I am worried about what might happen during my college fraternity initiation. Are there limits to what they can do?
Hazing means any activity in which a person intentionally or recklessly endangers the physical health of another person for the purpose of initiation into or affiliation with a student organization, academic association or athletic team at a high school, college or university in this state; The term “hazing” includes, without limitation, any physical brutality or brutal treatment, including, without limitation, whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics, exposure to the elements or forced consumption of food, liquor, drugs or other substances.” NRS 200.605 (4)(a)

“Hazing does not include: any athletic, curricular, extracurricular or quasi-military practice, conditioning or competition that is sponsored or approved by the high school, college or university.” NRS 200.605 (4)(b)

The key to remember is that to consent to the hazing activity is not a defense to the charge. NRS 200.605 (2)

The penalties for hazing are (NRS 200.605(1)(a)(b):

No substantial bodily harm, a misdemeanor – up to six months in county jail and a $1,000 fine

Resulting in substantial bodily harm – a Gross Misdemeanor – up to one year in the county jail and a $2,000 fine (NRS 193.140)

The Hazing statute does not preclude the District Attorney’s office from filing felony Battery charges if the hazing resulted in a serious injury. All felonies may be punishable by a minimum in state prison or probation if deemed appropriate. NRS 193.130

Do I need a special license to operate a motorboat?
All operators of vessels powered by a motor over 15 horsepower on interstate waters and who were born on or after January 1, 1983 must possess a certificate of completion of a boater education course or proficiency exam (interstate waters means waters forming the boundary between the State of Nevada and an adjoining state). The course or the exam must be one that is approved by the Nevada Department of Wildlife. NRS 488.730
Of course, a person can get a DUI on a boat just as easily as in a car. NRS 484.379. One is also civilly liable for any damages that one causes through reckless behavior.

Do I need a license to fish or hunt?
Yes. A person who hunts or traps any of the wild birds or mammals or who fishes without having first procured a license or permit to do so, is guilty of a misdemeanor. The only exception is for children under 12 who are accompanied by an adult. NRS 502.010


What could happen if I am arrested for spray painting graffiti?

Graffiti is: any unauthorized inscription, word, figure, or design that is marked, etched, scratched, drawn, painted on or affixed to the public or private property, real or personal, of another, which defaces the property. NRS 206.005

The penalties are (NRS 206.330):
1 (a). if the value of the loss is less than $250, it is a misdemeanor,
1 (b) loss is between $250 and $5,000, it is a gross misdemeanor
1 (c) where the value of the loss is more than $5,000 OR where the damage results in the impairment of public communication, transportation or police and fire protection, a person is guilty of a category E felony – one to four years in state prison, with mandatory probation (NRS 193.130)

NRS 206.330 (3)(a-c)
1st offense
50 – 99 hours of community service
2nd offense
100 – 199 hours of community service
3rd offense
not less than 200 hours of community service

Note: community service must be related to ridding graffiti.

NRS 206.330 (5)
The court may suspend driver’s license for up to six months for an offender over the age of 18.
NRS 206.125 (1) (a-e)
Anybody who vandalizes, places graffiti on, or defaces, or damages a place of worship,
a cemetery or mortuary, a school, educational facility, or community center is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

This guide is an introduction to narrow topics of Nevada law. Keep in mind that federal, state and local laws are constantly subject to change. If you have a legal question or problem, you should consult an attorney.