Have you been charged with resisting arrest? Contact the Law Office of Vikas Bajaj, APC for immediate legal assistance with your criminal case. If you are convicted for resisting arrest your future will be changed forever. Not only will you face potential time behind bars, but you will also face a future burdened with a criminal record. This means that it will be tough to do things we often take for granted, such as renting a home or landing a good-paying job. You have the right to defend yourself against any allegations of criminal misconduct, and our skilled legal team can help. Call our resisting arrest attorney San Diego today to set up your initial consultation.
Resisting Arrest in San Diego
You do not necessarily have to have an interaction with the police to be charged with resisting arrest in San Diego. In fact, you do not even have to be under arrest (or being placed under arrest) to be charged with this crime. The crime of resisting arrest, as defined in California Penal Code Section 148 PC, occurs when you:
- Willfully resist, delay, or obstruct;
- Any public officer, peace officer, or an emergency medical technician (EMT);
- In the discharge (or attempt to discharge) any lawful duty in his/her employment;
As you can see, the crime of resisting arrest is fairly broad. You can basically be charged with resisting arrest for any attempt to prevent a public officer, peace officer, or EMT from doing his or her job. Your attempt does not have to be successful for you to be charged with this crime. The fact that you tried to stop a public officer, police officer, or EMT from lawfully doing something that his or her job permits and/or requires is sufficient.
Examples of Resisting Arrest
Since resisting arrest is a broadly defined crime it can be difficult to understand when your behavior may result in criminal charges. Here are a few examples of behavior that would be considered resisting arrest in San Diego.
- You intentionally prevent a police cruiser from passing you on the road when their emergency lights are engaged.
- Police ask you to leave the scene of an unlawful protest outside of a private residence. You refuse to leave and go limp when they attempt to escort you off of the property.
- You provide false information to a police officer at the scene of a crime or accident.
- You prevent an EMT from administering medical assistance to an injured person.
Penalties for Resisting Arrest in San Diego
Resisting arrest is a misdemeanor offense in San Diego. If you are convicted of resisting arrest under Penal Code 148 PC your criminal sentence can include:
- $1,000 in fines;
- Up to 12 months in a San Diego County jail;
- Community service; and/or
- Summary probation.
If you engage in other criminal behavior while you are resisting arrest you can face additional criminal charges. For example, if an emergency medical technician is attempting to administer treatment and you strike or push them away, you could also face charges for criminal battery.
Defenses to Resisting Arrest
Just because you may be facing criminal charges for resisting arrest does not mean that you will be convicted of the crime. The prosecution must establish each element of the crime in order to get a conviction. You can make the prosecution’s job even more difficult by asserting legal arguments in your defense. These arguments will attempt to excuse and/or explain your alleged criminal behavior. Successfully arguing these defenses will cast doubt on your guilt, preventing the prosecution from satisfying their burden of proof. Defenses that can be argued against charges of resisting arrest in San Diego include:
- You lacked the required knowledge;
- You did not act willfully;
- The officer was not acting in a lawful capacity;
- The officer was engaged in unlawful behavior; and
- You have been falsely accused.
It is important to understand that you cannot be convicted for resisting arrest when an officer is engaged in illegal or improper activities. For example, you cannot be convicted for resisting arrest if you are being unlawfully detained or an officer is using excess force to restrain you. Charges for resisting arrest can only be successful if you willfully obstruct an officer who is attempting to do his/her lawful duties.
Many times, you can face charges for resisting arrest in addition to charges for other related offenses. If you are charged with multiple crimes your criminal sentence will likely be more severe.
- Evading an Officer. This crime occurs when you drive a motor vehicle in an attempt to flee or escape police.
- Battery of a Peace Officer. This crime occurs when you make harmful or offensive contact with a peace officer engaged in his/her lawful duties.
- Resisting an Executive Officer. This crime occurs when you use force or violence to prevent or deter a police officer, judge, or elected official from carrying out the responsibilities of their job.
San Diego Resisting Arrest Defense Attorney
Are you facing criminal charges for resisting arrest in San Diego? If so, contact resisting arrest attorney San Diego Vikas Bajaj today for assistance with your criminal case. He can help to minimize the consequences of your arrest and fight to keep your record clean. Early intervention is crucial to a successful result, so it is important to act quickly. The sooner you call the Law Office of Vikas Bajaj, APC, the sooner we can get to work on your defense.
For nearly two decades, criminal defense lawyer Vikas Bajaj has been advocating for the rights of criminal defendants in the greater San Diego area. He has handled thousands of complex criminal matters, including those for resisting arrest. He understands that your future is on the line and will fight to get the charges in your case reduced or dismissed. Call today to schedule your initial consultation.