NFL stadium arrests: Are they serious?

While the Colts don’t make many “Top 10 Unruly Fans” lists, we are not without our brushes with the law. From rushing the field to alcohol-fueled fights in the stands, every NFL stadium has its fair share of aggressive, unruly behavior. In the 2011-12 season, for example, at Lucas Oil Stadium, 64 fans were ejected and nine were arrested.

The two activities listed above can certainly carry significant criminal consequences upon conviction. Penalties such as fines, community service and jail time can depend on the severity of the charge as well as an individual’s criminal record. A recent piece published on WTHR.com, however, highlighted a completely different situation.

Unruly behavior.

“Behaving badly at Lucas Oil Stadium,” said Mary Milz. “Can get you booted and banned from returning.” When people drink too much at a sporting event, she goes on to say, they start getting obnoxious. Fans can become unruly by yelling, screaming, spilling food on people and standing up in front of other fans.

A season-long or lifetime ban is a serious matter for serious fans to face. The stadium, however, gives people the option of getting back in at a later date. Colt fans who are ejected from the stadium can pay $75 and take a four-hour online course referred to as the “fan conduct class.” Successful completion of this class allows those ejected to only face a temporary ban.

There’s another wrinkle to the situation, though, as fans who attempt to re-enter the stadium without first completing the “fan conduct course” can face a city code violation for trespassing.

Take your football seriously . . . but also take into account the enjoyment of those around you. If you find yourself facing criminal charges, you should probably call a defense attorney for legal guidance and representation.