As Philadelphia Eagle fans we’ve all heard the stories. We threw snowballs at Santa Claus. We cheered Michael Irvin’s career-ending injury. We booed the Donovan McNabb draft choice. We threw things at Minnesota Vikings fans. Deserved or not, Philadelphia sports fans have garnered a negative reputation nationally. A few bad apples have made some poor choices and our reputation has become overblown. However, Philadelphians know that the reputation stems from an incredible amount of passion for our teams. And, it doesn’t help that our beloved Eagles have never won a Super Bowl. On February 4, 2018, that could all change when the Eagles will have their second shot at Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.
This year’s Eagles certainly seem like a team of destiny and just may have the formula to bring the Lombardi Trophy home to Philadelphia. If they should win, how will Eagles’ fans react? Will the excitement and partying turn into a dangerous situation? This is our chance to show the sport’s world that we can win, party and still show respect for others and our city. However, we also need to be cognizant that some may go too far and their behavior turn criminal. As a Philadelphia criminal defense attorney, the Super Bowl run made me think of the crimes that may be committed on Super Bowl Sunday if the Eagles win.
DUI – Driving Under the Influence on Super Bowl Sunday
As a criminal defense attorney in Philadelphia, I represent countless individuals charged with driving under the influence (DUI). There is often an uptick in DUI arrests around holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. There are going to be hundreds of thousands of Eagles’ fans either going to bars or parties to watch the Super Bowl. In fact, Bud Light, with its “Dilly Dilly” ad campaign, has promised beer for all in Philadelphia, if the Eagles win the Super Bowl! “Philly Philly!” When the fourth quarter ends and the confetti has fallen, people will need to get home from bars, clubs and parties. An Eagles’ Super Bowl win will be like all of the above holidays wrapped into one for Super Bowl-starved Eagles’ fans. Philadelphia Police will have a large presence on the streets in and around Philadelphia and will be pulling anyone over who they suspect has been drinking too much. You don’t want the celebration to get so far that you put yourself or others on the road in danger. Even a first-offense DUI can land you in jail for three days, cost you thousands of dollars in fines, loss of your driver’s license for one year and other penalties. Therefore, please find a designated driver or take an Uber, Lyft or a cab home so the celebration doesn’t turn into a night with police getting your blood alcohol level checked. While DUI arrests will likely be the most common criminal offense on Super Bowl Sunday, they won’t be seen on the news the way some other crimes could. You can learn more about the offense of DUI here.
Criminal Mischief – Property Damage if Eagles Win Super Bowl
Prior to the NFC Championship game against the Vikings, the “Crisco Cops” were out placing grease on light posts hoping to prevent people from damaging city property if the Eagles beat the Vikings. After the 38-7 drubbing of the Vikings, Eagles’ fans were out in the streets partying. They were on Broad Street, in South Philly and in the Northeast. And, despite the “Crisco Cops”, some managed to climb streetlights in celebration. All in all, however, it appeared that the crowds controlled themselves. While hopefully the same remains true after a Super Bowl win, there is always the risk that euphoria combined with excessive alcohol could lead to public and private property being damaged, cars getting turned over by rowdy crowds or other mischief that could be criminal. Large crowds tend to adopt a mob mentality and if some start to act out, others are sure to follow. These crowds sometimes will do more than destroy property and turn on each other.
Assault – Large Crowds Result in Fighting if Eagles Win Super Bowl
Nobody wants to see their property get destroyed as a result of a celebration. However, it’s a better alternative to someone getting injured. While everyone will be happily celebrating, it simply takes someone looking at another the wrong way, tripping over another or hitting on someone’s girlfriend for a fight to break out. And, with so many people out in the streets celebrating, a small fight can quickly turn into a violent riot where many people could be badly injured. With beer bottles everywhere, weapons will easily be within reach. If a fight breaks out and you injure another seriously, you could be arrested and charged with felony aggravated assault. You can learn much more about the criminal offense of assault here.
Eagles’ Super Bowl Victory – Final Thoughts from Philadelphia Criminal Defense Attorney
We are all hoping for an Eagles’ Super Bowl victory on Sunday. If the birds should find a way to win their first Super Bowl in franchise history, the city of Philadelphia will be one huge party for days. This is a night you want to remember as a wonderful celebration spent with friends and family. You don’t want to end up in jail or with an upcoming court date when you should be looking forward to a parade down Broad Street. While there is no reason not to be excited, have fun and celebrate, please make sure you do so responsibly. Paying bail and fighting a criminal case in a Philadelphia court could end up being more expensive then tickets to the Super Bowl. If you have any questions about your legal rights or need a legal consultation, please do not hesitate to contact our office. #FlyEaglesFly