Bachelor parties are a last hoorah and an “anything goes” excuse for men to act like young boys again. Things often go way too far, and it’s fine unless you get caught up in the shenanigans. Angry spouses, agitated police officers, and black eyes are some standard outcomes. While your shenanigans may make you a legend among your buddies, they can be taken out of context by everyone not involved in your bachelor party. What may be intended as some innocent bonding time can be misconstrued. To avoid any backlash, there are ways to minimize the damage to your fellow comrades and yourself.
5 Examples of Bachelor Party Shenanigans That Went Too Far
1. The Disorderly Conduct Misdemeanor of the Staal Boys
During Eric Staal’s bachelor party, he and 14 others, including his brother, Jordan Staal, wound up getting arrested. Jordan and Eric play for the NHL team the Pittsburgh Penguins, so their arrest made headlines. They were screaming, yelling, and playing loud music at a resort and were warned multiple times to quiet down. They were ordered to leave the resort they were staying at, so they went on a walk, which lead them to the highway. There, they began to harass motorists, which led to their arrest. Jordan Staal, who was only 18 at the time, was charged with underage drinking.
2. Moroccan Dress-Up Misunderstanding
In Morocco, a French man dressed up as a woman and paraded around in Marrakesh’s famous bazaar. This might not be a criminal offense in most places, but it’s seriously offensive in some. They were put in custody, and their actions were said to be irresponsible and disruptive to public morals. Morocco’s penal code outlaws homosexuality, and I guess dressing up as a woman as a prank crosses that legal line. Moral of the story here, I guess, is make sure you know what the customs are in the country you’re traveling to for your bachelor party shenanigans.
3. Mile High Bachelor Shenanigans
If you’re flying elsewhere for a bachelor party, you may not want to follow the lead of this crew. Twelve Brits were flying from London to Bratislava for Joshua Mariner’s bachelor party. They were loud and obnoxious, even throwing punches at each other. The crew stopped giving them alcohol. The end result was the captain landing the plane in Berlin, an unscheduled stop. The worst six of the bunch faced charges of up to 20,000 GBP under the Aviation Security Act. The saving grace in this story is that Ryanair should have never let them on the flight in their already drunken conditions. This is the kind of thing that has the potential to stand up in court when presented properly.
4. Bachelor Party Bar Brawl
In Spokane, Washington, a groom-to-be hadn’t even made it to the altar before he made his first appearance in court for a bachelor party gone wrong. He and two of his friends were a part of an all-out brawl during their party. Multiple calls occurred stating that a man was jumping up and down on the hood of a car. When the police arrived, they found more than 25 people fighting outside of the bar. When police tried to separate the groom and his two buddies, they pushed the officer. Police backup was called and more than 25 officers arrived to break up the madness. The three have been charged with assaulting a law enforcement officer as well as other misdemeanors.
5. The Groping Groom
Police arrested a groom to be in Stillwater named Steven Bryce Meduna after allegedly groping women on the dance floor at a bar. Meduna was asked to leave but he resisted. In his drunken stupor, he grabbed a railing and refused to let go when they attempted to drag him off the dance floor. Several employees finally managed to get him onto the patio area but he continued to aggressively attempt to punch a security officer. Meduna was arrested for disorderly conduct and was booked into Washington County Jail.
Stealing Someone’s Garden Gnome
It may seem hilarious at the time to steal someone’s property like, say, a garden gnome. However, the owners may not take it so well, and they may call the police. If you’re found with said garden decoration, you may end up in more trouble than you bargained for. As you didn’t cause bodily harm or threaten anyone, the charge will be theft. Theft is a felony in most cases, and it’s possible you could be sent to prison for 3 months to 2 years. Most people are going to understand that you made an error in judgement at a bachelor party. First, plead forgiveness from the owners with a formal apology. If you are unable to sweet talk the police and owners into the innocence of your theft, you’re likely going to need a defense lawyer.
Criminal mischief includes silly things you would never normally do. Anything goes at a bachelor party while you are out on the town for the night. Maybe in your half drunk lack of judgement, you kick someone’s property or maybe you want to commemorate the night with a graffiti memorial. That’s all well and good until the police drive by and catch you mid-spray (or mid-kick). It depends how much damage you’ve done in dollars, of course, but you could end up with jail time for your momentary lapse. Don’t run. This will only incur additional charges. Drop the can, raise your hands and be prepared to answer some questions. It’s likely you’ll be taken down to the police station as you’ve already proven you can’t be trusted on this particular night. Be cooperative but don’t give up too much information as it can be used against you later. You may be charged, and if this occurs, immediately ask for a plea deal and say you will fix the damage you caused. This should eliminate any possibility of a criminal record.
While it may seem innocent to urinate in the streets or go streaking during a bachelor party, it can be taken up in the wrong way completely. You could end up in prison or fined a lot of money with an indecent exposure conviction if you don’t get your story across correctly. It’s probably best if you skip right to finding a lawyer so they can argue your case for you. It’s possible that your charges can be reduced or dismissed if defense strategies are played out well.
Just the act of swearing in the streets (which may be perfectly acceptable according to bachelor party etiquette) can land you in jail for the night. By law, you’re breaching peace, and you can be considered a threat to the public. If you’re convicted under the charge of disorderly conduct, it’s a permanent stain on your record. If you’re charged with a class B misdemeanor, you could face prison time. You may be asked to provide a statement by the police, but if you’re under the influence, you may want to keep quiet. Many times, drunken ramblings only make things worse.
Drinking in Public
There may be drinking in public involved with your bachelor party, or you may just be drunk getting from one place to the next. Being arrested for public intoxication is a buzzkill to the whole night. While you’re drunk, the police may decide to release you from prison, provided you plead guilty or no contest. While you may want to get back out and party with your friends, you’ll actually be convicted if you agree to their terms. It’s publicly put on record, and it can influence your career later on. Even if you’re guilty, this small act shouldn’t change your life. If the police press charges, get a defense lawyer and contest it.
Evading Arrest (i.e. running from the cops)
Evading arrest is a fine line and you have more rights than you may realize. If a police officer starts talking to you, you’re not required to respond. You are free to decline questions or searches as long as you haven’t been placed in custody or formerly arrested. If they have reasonable suspicion, they must order you to stop. If they do ask you to stop and you don’t, you could end up with high fines and potentially some jail time. The best way to avoid the charge is to say you were confused, and if they didn’t take the necessary steps towards a proper arrest, you can contest it.