San Diego Resisting Arrest Lawyer

Resisting Arrest, Evading a Peace Officer, & Obstructing a Police Officer

San Diego Resisting Arrest LawyerSan Diego Criminal Defense Attorney
Criminal charges involving the alleged interference with police or the court process are harshly prosecuted in San Diego.  Our government likes to impose its will and expects us to conform and submit.  When an officer tries to pull someone over, not stopping will likely lead to evading arrest charges.  Trying to stop a police officer from placing you in handcuffs will likely lead to resisting arrest charges.  Even the slightest touch of a police officer can lead to an arrest and criminal charges for battery on a peace officer.  Some related charges include refusing to testify, lying on the witness stand or dissuading another person from testifying.  These are different, but similar in that they impede the criminal justice process.


Penal Code Section 148 makes it a crime to willfully resist, delay or otherwise obstruct a law enforcement officer or EMT in the performance of their duties, including, but not limited to making a lawful arrest.  PC 148(a)(1) ("resisting arrest") is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in county jail and a fine of up to $1000.  Some defenses include that the arrest was  not a lawful arrest, mistaken identity, that the defendant did not actually resist arrest (the officer is making a false accusation), that self-defense against excessive force justified the resistance displayed by the defendant, and more.  Resisting arrest is a serious charge on its own, but often charged alongside other offenses (those that led to the arrest in the first place, as well as charges based on later discovered crimes or future conduct).  A conviction for resisting arrest will show up during any future contact with law enforcement, making traffic stops and other dealings with the police much worse than they already are.  Consult with an experienced San Diego criminal defenses attorney to discuss your case.

Penal Code Section 243(b) makes it a crime to strike, push, punch, kick, spit at, slap or otherwise touch a police officer.  Often charged alongside resisting arrest charges, battery on a peace officer charges are likely in situations involving the use of force to resist or evade arrest.  If there is no injury to the officer, battery on a peace officer is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in county jail.  With great bodily injury ("GBI"), the charge is punishable by up to 4 years in prison.  Some defenses include that the arrest was unlawful, that no force or touching took place, that the officer is lying, self defense to excessive force/unlawful arrest, lack of force (false accusation), and more.


California Vehicle Code Section 2800.1 makes it a crime to willfully flee or attempt to flee from a police officer while driving a motor vehicle.  VC 2800.1 is generally a misdemeanor absent certain aggravating factors, and is punsihable by up to a year in county jail.  If the evading is considered "reckless" then the crime is a "wobbler" meaning that it may be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, pursuant to VC 2800.2.  Evading is deemed "reckless" when it involves a wonton and willful disregard  for the safety of people or property.  Some examples of recklessly evading include driving on the wrong side of the street/wrong way on a one-way street, driving on a sidewalk, committing repeated vehicle code violations, driving off road and more.  VC 2800.2 is usually filed as a felony.  VC 2800.3 covers evading causing injury or death.  Fairly self-explanatory, when an act of evading is alleged to have lead to injury or death, the resulting crime is a "wobbler" punishable by up to seven years in prison with injury or ten years in prison if someone dies.

In evading cases, the government must prove that the defendant had the specific intent to evade, that the officer was properly uniformed, that the officer properly signaled to the defendant to pull over, and that the defendant actually evaded an officer who was attempting to conduct an investigatory stop.  Defenses include lack of specific intent (including lack of intent due to intoxication), false accusations, necessity (such as a need to get to the hospital), and more.
  Additional consequences can include a 30 day impound of the vehicle and loss of commercial driving privileges for one year (a very serious consequence for those who depend on their license for work).  If you or a loved one has been arrested for a charge involving evading the police, contact a San Diego Criminal Defense Attorney to discuss your case, your defenses and to protect your rights and interests.

The term "executive officer" is a broader term, applying to any employee charged with the responsibility of enforcing the law.  Essentially, any action that affects a government employee's law enforcement duties will be deemed a crime.  PC 69 applies to the use of force, threats or violence to resist or prevent an executive officer in the performance of his/her duties.  Obstructing or resisting executive officers is a "wobbler" and is punishable as a misdemeanor or felony.  As a felony, it is punishable by up to three years behind bars.

If you or a loved one has been arrested and charged with resisting, obstructing or evading, contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Loncar now for a Free Consultation with a San Diego Criminal Defense Attorney.  Police frequently lie or use excessive force, but it takes a skilled, experienced lawyer to show the court or jury that this is what happened.  We can discuss your arrest and charges, your possible defenses and what to expect in court.  If you want to fight the case against you, our office can get started right away to protect your rights and liberty.

Nicholas M. Loncar, Esq.
San Diego Criminal Defense Attorney
San Diego DUI Lawyer
By Nicholas Loncar         


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