Definition of Public Intoxication - Texas Penal Code Section 49.02

§ 49.02. PUBLIC INTOXICATION. 

(a) A person commits an offense if the person appears in a public place while intoxicated to the degree that the person may endanger the person or another.

(b) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the alcohol or other substance was administered for therapeutic purposes and as a part of the person's professional medical treatment by a licensed physician.

(c) Except as provided by Subsection (e), an offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.

(d) An offense under this section is not a lesser included offense under Section 49.04.

(e) An offense under this section committed by a person younger than 21 years of age is punishable in the same manner as if the minor committed an offense to which Section 106.071, Alcoholic Beverage Code, applies.

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Comments (37) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Doug Baird - December 18, 2007 6:35 PM

In a Public Intox case is the driveway of your residence considered a public place?

linda - February 3, 2008 4:43 PM

in a PI, how is it proven if no type of test for level was done to say that a person is intoxicated. is the burden of proof the officers statement while the person was standing in front of their own apt.door?

Sara Nelson - February 13, 2008 3:44 PM

I was issued a public intoxication in my former place of business where I was the only person there. Yes, by myself, noone with me. Getting ready to clean. How can that be considered a public intoxication? I was never asked about having a ride home but my car was being borrowed by my father and he was to pick me up. Is that right? Literally all alone, by myself noone closer than 50 feet in a bar where they were watching sports very loudly. Seriously.

Mark Olesen - February 24, 2008 1:27 PM

I was arrested twice in my apartment complex. I hired an attorney, and went to my first trial by jury. Because of the interpretation of law, I was found guilty and fined $1. The apartment complex is gated with NO TRESSPESSING signs. Even though I was two feet outside my door (cops asked me to step outside), it is considered a common area within the community. Okay, so what? I would like to appeal it because there was no evidence that I was ever was a danger or would ever be a danger.

I think the law is just a way for the police to abuse their powers and infringe on your freedoms.

We'll see how the next case goes.

andrew rodriguez - May 22, 2008 12:49 AM

I was asked to step out of my friends apartment after i walked in without any drink in hand because a friend was setting flairs out side the cops forced me out because they wanted to give me a pi at the station they found less than 1 gram of cocain in my possession what can i do?

BRENDA - June 23, 2008 3:26 PM

I was arrested on my own private property for PI by our local constable. I feel that he was wrong to have arrested my. I had call law enforcement beause my kids were out of control. I have 2 kids that smoke pot and from time to time they bring it into my me So this night I called them and I was the one arrested. I would love to have this constable repremanded.

BRENDA - June 23, 2008 3:31 PM

I was arrested on my own private property for PI by our local constable. I feel that he was wrong to have arrested my. I had call law enforcement beause my kids were out of control. I have 2 kids that smoke pot and from time to time they bring it into my me So this night I called them and I was the one arrested. I would love to have this constable repremanded.

Jackie Carlson - July 21, 2008 5:29 PM

Is it illegal to be drinking in a public area, like a pier, while fishing? Not causing any trouble just sitting and fishing. I know my uncles do that but it's out in the middle of nowhere? I'm still unclear of a lot of drinking laws and they make it sound so confusing.

cat - July 31, 2008 1:01 AM

Is it PI or illegal if im intoxicated on my front lawn?

cat - July 31, 2008 1:01 AM

Is it PI or illegal if im intoxicated on my front lawn?

Brad - August 5, 2008 1:25 AM

Hi there

I had a PI case in TX and was arrested for an hour. My case is dismissed. Its been an year it happened. I checked my FBI criminal search to check my arrest record. It says no arrest. I dont know what to answer in immigration papers for " Have you been arrested "???
Kindly Advice

Francis - February 4, 2009 11:44 AM

I have a DWI trial pending, it keeps getting re set forward.
I got a Public intoxication citation a couple of weeks later after the DWI arrest, but before the DWI trial.

What is my best action?

1.Pay the PI and be done with it before DWI trial?
2.Wait till after DWI trial then pay PI fine?
3.Will the PI citation have an impact on my DWI (1st offense)

thank you.

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lula - March 9, 2009 7:24 PM

Brad in aug 08.the answer is your not black.the harris cops heriffs deptment have bad cops in their deptment.and im willing to take a polygraph test to prove this and if anyone else has had one of the sheriffs or cops any of them and you know that they have done wrong.because they lie and they lie bad and they riun peoples lives ,and they can care less,well i say stand up and ask for justice. take a polygraph test and have the arresting officer take one too. and demand that both test be public. and if all people who know that they have been done wrong stand up and fight for whats right.and not let them get away with this anymore.and of course some people really was pi and really needed to go to jail.but to all the bad cops out there who has to lie and riun peoples lives i say lets take a polygraph test and really go pover the facts. I say to the people who have been done wrong by them pull as one and get a joint law suit.they say a pi is nothing but i can tell you its something,if your a mom you dps in your life forever.some people have it hard at work,around town,many reason.and they take it as a nothing .but when you say that someone is a danger to themselves and people around them that cant stop you from getting many,many,many jobs.I say go after them,It maybe hard because they are going to lie for each other,and make you look like the worst person in the world but dont stop! go after them,Im going to enternal affairs and im not going to stop until the truth is out how that sherrif in humble o4-5 days before christmas called me a vally girl,and im black,called me a hoe. said i think im better them everyone one else. and said he can make it hard for me.and i was lost in harris county jail because he sent me in as a white girl. and yes he was white.I almost lost my little girl behind this and im not going to ;pet him get away with this.and everyone else who helped him lie.I will post 4 or 5 times a week to let everyone know what going on here in texas with my case.Im fighting and not giveing up.He lied and they did me wrong and someone is going to tell the truth. if i have to go to the supreme court.im not done with harris county. Lula mccarter. my name is lula mccarter

lula - March 9, 2009 7:42 PM

And francis,why do you think you got the dwi.because they pulled it up that you had a pi.even if you were not drinking while driveing to them yes you were because of the pi.so fight,fight them and do it right read learn,they will tell you so many things to cover for one another,Im telling you all contact me we can get a attorney out of state,that dont give a flying hoot about texas.and will make sure that justice is done.Think francis.I have already been talking to a attorney.and make sure that alot of people know what your doing just incase something happens to you.I have no enemies that want to kill me.No i dont trust harris c at all they have cops that lie.and i want the 2 of them to take a polygraph and make it public.And ill take one too.and the films in the car.theres alot im going to say on this site.like they said that 80% of all the cop cars in harris does not have video inside or outside of them.when it comes to one of theirs doing wrong that dont have anything for edvidence.they dont have it.but if its the other side side they sure can come up with some stuff.they will take you to jail and find out later.but for them they have to investigate.I want those 2 cops off the force. it was racist and lies and they ruined my life almost. and im going to fight untilo they are taken off if this was 30 years ago i think that cop would of have taken me off somewhere and put a bullet in my head he was just that mad at me.Ill tell the rest of the story in detail another day,2 morrow.But im not going to give up and dont any of give up.go for justice. LULA.

Jesse - April 3, 2009 9:53 PM

Ok, so I was given a PI for being drunk in the backseat of my friends car while he was driving me home. Is that ok? Should I have been arrested for that, when they asked me to step out of the vehicle and then was issued a PI?

Alfredo H. - June 24, 2009 10:36 PM

I was given a PI last night. It was a terrible experience as I feel I was not intoxicated to point where I was a "danger" to myself or any other person. I wasn't given a sobriety test nor asked to give a breath sample. I was not read my Miranda Rights as I was being arrested. To add insult to injury, before I was handcuffed another guy came with an open container spoke to the officer that was detaining me for the moment and was chatting with him. Why was I arrested when the other dude was drinking RIGHT INFRONT OF HIM?!? They said I had a big mouth, but of course I did I had just been arrested for absolutely no reason! This has got to stop...

david - July 15, 2009 9:03 PM

I JUST WANT TO KNOW IF THERES ANY WAY TO CLEAN THE PI OF THE RECORD ?

david - July 15, 2009 9:03 PM

I JUST WANT TO KNOW IF THERES ANY WAY TO CLEAN THE PI OF THE RECORD ?

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sky - November 14, 2009 7:14 AM

I was inside a Bar and I got a PI is that right?

sky - November 14, 2009 7:14 AM

I was inside a Bar and I got a PI is that right?

shelbyd - December 18, 2009 2:38 AM

just wondering...when someone gets arrested for PI, is there a bond to get out? or just a fine?

nothappy - January 26, 2010 9:02 AM

Back in 98' I was arrested for PI. I spent 8hours in the tank with a bunch of drunk people. It was a horrible experience. My friends and I went to a club and I barely had a 1/2 beer in the pickup before we got there. my stupid friend got off the truck with his beer and two offduty cops who were doing security came up to us. my friend tried to walk away like nothing happened. That pissed of the one of the cops. The cop told him to put down his beer and my friend dropped it on the ground instead... breaking it. This infuriated the cop and his partner said, "you know what? lets send them to jail." The other cop, who was thuggish and had gold teeth said, "call in the paddywaggon!!." They took all three of us to the tank. Here I am, in this foul smelling room with a bunch of drunks from all walks of life. I got it dismissed by doing deferred adjudication. I am planning on going to a Basic Peace Officer's academy, but I am wondering if this will hinder me at all. Its been over 10 years.

kaci okabayashi - March 26, 2010 12:50 AM

My husband and i were at an event located at a bar. i am 9 months pregnant and someone said something to me about being there. in defence my husband acted out a bit and yelled in the guys face...all of the sudden, he was put in a cop car and taken off to jail in less then 5 mins. He was just charged for public intoxication and we were not even drinking...how does that work?

jacey - May 4, 2010 8:49 PM

i got a pi, im 18 years old, and that night i was not driving, had a designated driver. i already have a breathalyzer in my car that was not court ordered, my father put it in there because hes really strict and knows i drink on occasion and never wanted me to be able to drink and drive. yet, i still got my license suspended for 6 months, and i am about to graduate high school, was hoping to be able to get a job over the summer, and sign up for college. doesnt look like thats happening very soon! sucks, but to me, it does not seem very reasonable or fair, seeing as i couldnt possibly drink and drive on any occasion and was not driving that night.

Director - July 16, 2010 12:25 PM

I am a Nursing director of a unit in a local hospital. I had been drinking and was involved in an accidient. I was not the driver. The officer performed a nystigmus test and arrested me for public intoxication. I was not a danger to myself or others, and I was not in public, but on the side of the road waiting for the driver to get us a ride back to his home. However,the police arrived and arrested us both. I cannot afford for this to affect my license. What options do I have? I must appear in court on tuesday the 20th.

elizabeth rodriguez - August 11, 2010 5:46 PM

I would like to know why cops are arresting people and charging them with PI or DWI without testing them. This is totally unfair and should be against the law. I think they are doing it just to get money out of people. What are they afraid of? A test should be done and the truth would be there. We all know that cops are not experts and make mistakes all the time. Why don't they do their job and test people to be sure instead of putting this on a person's record when they are not drunk. I think this is one of the reasons people don't like cops.

Dan Man - December 21, 2010 3:36 PM

If You have never had a P.I., just take a trip to Port aransas, Texas and you will get one walking down the sidewalk sober. Good Luck

Kathy Woodman - March 9, 2011 10:21 AM

I had a left a bar after 2 drinks and decided to walk the back way, being dark I went on to someones property who was bragging about being a cop. He threw me to the ground and cuffed me, alll the while I was trying to explain that my boyfriend{ who only had 1 margarita and some tacos} came looking for me and he to was arrested. No rights, no breathalyzer except to look in my eyes. I have several diseases that reguire me to take meds. No bond was charged and booked and let out 8 hours later. I am pissed off..anuy advice??

kathy woodman - March 9, 2011 10:22 AM

I had a left a bar after 2 drinks and decided to walk the back way, being dark I went on to someones property who was bragging about being a cop. He threw me to the ground and cuffed me, alll the while I was trying to explain that my boyfriend{ who only had 1 margarita and some tacos} came looking for me and he to was arrested. No rights, no breathalyzer except to look in my eyes. I have several diseases that reguire me to take meds. No bond was charged and booked and let out 8 hours later. I am pissed off..anuy advice??

Mia - May 22, 2011 3:21 PM

I was at a bar last night in angleton tx, my friend was sitting at the bar. I was drunk and needed to lay down. So I told my friend that I was gonna go to my truck and go to sleep, and when she was ready to come get me and I would ride home with her ( she was sober ).... As I walked to the door the arresting officer, officer Martinez, arrested me and pushed me out of the bar, and took me directly to his patrol car. As we were walking he said he was arresting me for public intoxication... And I reminded him he pushed me into public... Also explained to him I was gonna go to sleep in my truck and wait for my sober friend to drive me home... Yeah... I was drunk, but by no means was I in public until he shoved me outside... By no means was I gonna drive drunk, I have a cdl, I wouldn't risk my life, other lives, nor my livelihood... Is a pi gonna affect my cdl?? Is it legal to arrest me in a bar, then shove me into public and give me a pi. I was forced out the door...?

Gers - July 5, 2011 10:57 PM

If I paid a fine for PI, how, if possible, can I have it expunged from my record? Some additional info., I was underage and the it occurred in Iowa 4 years ago.

0813 - December 9, 2011 4:53 PM

Ok folks. Let's get this settled . If you are in a bar open to the public ie not a private club. Then you are in a public place. If you work in the bar and are intoxicated then you are an intoxicated permitee . Take the pi and be happy. It's a lesser charge . And let's face it . Generally if you are not screwing up. The cops would not be looking at you. And for the guy talking about port Aransas . Most people walking down the street are legally drunk. That's just a fact.

paula - July 20, 2012 9:26 PM

Ok, so I was given a PI for being drunk in the backseat of my friends car while he was driving me home. Is that ok? Should I have been arrested for that, when they asked me to step out of the vehicle and then was issued a pi?

paula - July 20, 2012 9:27 PM

Ok, so I was given a PI for being drunk in the backseat of my friends car while he was driving me home. Is that ok? Should I have been arrested for that, when they asked me to step out of the vehicle and then was issued a pi?

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