Code of the District of Columbia

§ 22–1322. Rioting or inciting to riot.

(a) A riot in the District of Columbia is a public disturbance involving an assemblage of 5 or more persons which by tumultuous and violent conduct or the threat thereof creates grave danger of damage or injury to property or persons.

(b) Whoever willfully engages in a riot in the District of Columbia shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than 180 days or a fine of not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01, or both.

(c) Whoever willfully incites or urges other persons to engage in a riot shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than 180 days or a fine of not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01, or both.

(d) If in the course and as a result of a riot a person suffers serious bodily harm or there is property damage in excess of $5,000, every person who willfully incited or urged others to engage in the riot shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than 10 years or a fine of not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01, or both.


(Dec. 27, 1967, 81 Stat. 742, Pub. L. 90-226, title IX, § 901; Aug. 20, 1994, D.C. Law 10-151, § 111, 41 DCR 2608; June 11, 2013, D.C. Law 19-317, § 216, 60 DCR 2064.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 22-1122.

1973 Ed., § 22-1122.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-317 substituted “not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01” for “not more than $1,000” in (b) and (c), and for “not more than $10,000” in (d).

Cross References

Burning of cross or other religious symbol, see § 22-3312.02.

Defacement of public or private building or property, see § 22-3312.01.

Wearing of masks for particular purposes, see § 22-3312.03.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary amendment of section, see § 111 of the Omnibus Criminal Justice Reform Emergency Amendment Act of 1994 (D.C. Act 10-255, June 22, 1994, 41 DCR 4286).

Interference with medical facilities and health professionals: For temporary prohibition of a person interfering with the free access to or egress from a medical facility or the home of a health professional in the District of Columbia, see §§ 101 and 102 of the Interference with Medical Facilities and Health Professionals and Reestablishment of Health Services Planning and Certificate of Need Program Emergency Act of 1995 (D.C. Act 11-117, July 25, 1995, 42 DCR 4044) and §§ 2 and 3 of the Interference with Medical Facilities and Health Professionals Congressional Review Emergency Act of 1995 (D.C. Act 11-152, November 9, 1995, 42 DCR 6565).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 216 of the Criminal Fine Proportionality Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-45, April 1, 2013, 60 DCR 5400, 20 DCSTAT 1300).

Temporary Legislation

Temporary addition of sections: D.C. Law 11-75 added 2 new sections to read as follows: “§ 101. Definitions. For the purposes of this title, the term: (1) ”Act“ shall not include speech. (2) ”Health professional“ means a person licensed to practice a health occupation in the District pursuant to § 2-3301.1 1981 Ed.. (3) ”Medical facility“ means a facility, agency, or organizational entity, as defined in § 32-1301 1981 Ed., licensed or otherwise authorized to provide health care services in the District. (4) ”Person“ means: (A) The chief medical officer of a medical facility or the chief medical officer’s designee; (B) The chief executive officer of a medical facility or the chief executive officer’s designee; (C) An agent of a medical facility; or. (D) A law enforcement officer in the performance of the enforcement officer’s official duty.” “§ 102. Interference with entering and leaving a medical facility or home. (a) A person shall not act alone or in concert with others with the intent to prevent another person from entering or leaving a medical facility. A person shall not detain a person or obstruct, impede, or hinder a person’s free passage. (b) A person shall not act alone or in concert with others with the intent to prevent a medical provider or a member of the medical provider’s family from entering or leaving the medical provider’s home. (c) Subsections (a) and (b) of this section shall not be construed to prohibit any lawful picketing or assembly. (d) Any person who violates either subsection (a) or (b) of this section, upon conviction, shall be fined not more than $1,000, imprisoned for not more than 6 months, or both.”

Section 301(b) of D.C. Law 11-75 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 19-317: Section 401 of D.C. Law 19-317 provided that the act shall apply only to offenses committed on or after June 11, 2013.