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Watch your mouth! Profanity could cost you in Myrtle Beach

The Myrtle Beach Sky Wheel at night (Photo: Dan J / Flickr / CC BY 2.0)

Myrtle Beach, S.C. (WPDE) -- Americans have freedom of speech, but police in Myrtle Beach want you to watch your mouth.

Bad words could cost you more than just a slap on the wrist. In the city, you could face a fine or even jail time.

Profane language falls under the city's disorderly conduct offense.

Myrtle Beach Spokesperson Mark Kruea says it's not about the money, it's about making sure people do not get out of hand and keeping the peace.

The court makes the ultimate decision, but it could cost you up to $500 and/or 30 days in jail.

"If you utter what is essentially fighting words, words designed to provoke a violent reaction from someone else, that's where you'll run afoul with this ordinance," explained Kruea.

The Sun News found the city issued almost 300 tickets last year for profane language. Each averaged about $77.

Bryan Murphy, on behalf of Myrtle Beach Police Department, issued the following statement on the offense:

A person would violate Ordinance 14-61 (b) 1 if he/she uses a language likely to provoke a violent reaction from another person. The ordinance lists several examples of the types of words which are unlawful. The penalty for conviction could include a fine and/or jail time. We encourage everyone to avoid violating this ordinance by speaking to others with the same respect and kindness he or she deserves.
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