Resisting Arrest

Resisting Arrest

What is Resisting Arrest

This is when a person willingly interferes with a law enforcement officer in the attempt to arrest him. The law officer could be a police officer, public officer or a peace officer. In which case a person delays, obstructs or resists arrest. It is also known as obstruction.

Examples of Resisting Arrest:

  • Running
  • Hiding
  • Going limp so that it is hard for law enforcement officer to arrest you.
  • Hitting a law enforcement officer
  • Vocally abusing the officer
  • Giving a false name
  • Aiding a suspect to hide
  • Snatching an officer’s weapon
Resisting Arrest

Unlawful arrest

Also referred to as false imprisonment, wrong arrest or false arrest, this is when one’s freedom and liberty is restricted against legal jurisdiction. It includes arrest made without a legal warrant or a probable cause or putting one in custody without legal jurisdiction. It is characterized by either of the following:

  • Wrong accusation
  • Arrest without an arrest warrant
  • Arrest without probable cause
  • Arrest without legal jurisdiction
  • Discriminative arrest on the basis of race or religion
  • Arrest for personal gain

Citizens have a right to resist unlawful arrest. However, this is limited to non-violent resist of arrest. Different states outline different stipulations on the acceptable limits of resisting arrest. Basically, citizens are expected to comply with the arrest on the basis of the law enforcement officer is acting within his call of duty. Citizens have the right to place charges against the law enforcement officer or police department for an unlawful arrest.

What is Resisting Arrest
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Resisting Arrest with a Deadly Weapon

This is a violent resist of arrest in which case the arrestee uses a weapon that could lead to death or deadly injuries on the law enforcement officer. Examples of deadly weapons include firearms, knives, and ammunitions. Resisting arrest with a deadly weapon also applies in cases where an arrestee attempts to take the officer’s firearm.

This is considered a felony which is punishable by minimum imprisonment for 2 years. In case of a conviction, the convict must serve at least 6 months jail time before being served parole probation. In some cases, the penalty may include both a fine and imprisonment.

Resisting Arrest Charge

When charged with resisting arrest, the jury must prove the following elements:

  • Intentional obstruction or resist of arrest
  • Violence towards the law enforcement officer
  • The officer was lawfully discharging his duty
Examples of Resisting Arrest

Once convicted, the crime is punishable through:

  • Incarceration: penal code 18 (a) 1 stipulates imprisonment in a county jail for a maximum of 10 years.
  • Fines: must not exceed $ 1,000
  • Probation
  • Community service

Defenses for Resisting Arrest

One can fight a resisting arrest charge on the basis of the following defenses:

  • Self defense
  • Unlawful arrest
  • False accusation
  • Lack of intent to resist arrest
  • Lack of probable cause
  • Unlawful statutes
  • No arrest warrant
Unlawful Arrest

Is Resisting Arrest a Felony?

Resisting arrest can be construed as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the action taken to resist the arrest. Besides, every state has its own stipulations on how to handle resisting arrest charges. Basically, resisting arrest will be charged as a felony under the following circumstances:

  • Use of firearm
  • Taking the officer’s firearm
  • Threatening to act violently
  • Hitting the officer

Otherwise, it is considered a misdemeanor when an arrestee hides or runs away from the arresting officer. Misdemeanors are punishable by fines and probation while felonies face more dire penalties such as imprisonment and larger fines.

What can one do if charged with resisting arrest?

Often times, there lies a thin line between what is legally liable and illegal in resisting arrest charges. The wise thing to do would be to contact a lawyer to guide you on the best cause of action. Zappich&Liller will come in handy in such a situation. Our team of experienced and dedicated attorneys will ensure protection of your rights and interests.

Resisting Arrest with a Deadly Weapon
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