Resisting Arrest in San Diego May Result in Higher Penalties

There are two possible causes why some people may choose to resist arrest. The first potential reason is when a person is being arrested for a crime they did not commit, and the second likely reason is when someone faces arrest for a crime they did commit but resists arrest to deter them from facing penalties and charges. Resistance is defined as uncooperative behavior, such as running, fighting, or arguing with law enforcement. People often try to convince the police of their innocence and, in the process, incriminate themselves further. That is why immediately hiring a professional and experienced criminal defense attorney is crucial for anyone facing criminal charges compacted by resisting arrest.

What Does California Law Say About Resisting Arrest?

In California, Penal Code 148 says that ANY conduct that resists or delays an officer's performance of duties is a crime. Most people do not know that resisting arrest goes beyond fighting against the police or making it difficult to be placed in handcuffs. Since any "delay" also falls under this penal code, it includes spitting at an officer or struggling to get into the police car or the holding cell. Police may claim any delay in their process as resistance. It is also essential to know that this penal code applies to all California agencies, including sheriffs, Highway Patrol, and police.

Penalties for Resisting Arrest in San Diego

The last thing anyone wants to do when resisting arrest is to face increased charges and fines. Unfortunately, the result of resisting arrest does just that. A legal professional with years of experience in the San Diego legal system can successfully help clients facing resisting arrest charges.

Depending on the circumstances, resisting arrest charges are filed as a misdemeanor or felony. Delaying, resisting, or obstructing law enforcement's duties is considered resisting arrest. Most people, at the moment of arrest, do not realize that being uncooperative and causing a delay can result in misdemeanor charges.

Misdemeanor charges may result in one year of time served in county jail and up to $1,000 in fines. Felonies may include state prison time up to three years with heftier fines. In San Diego County, being arrested for resisting arrest is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. Having a professional criminal defense attorney by your side, and relentlessly fighting in your best interest is critical. Only the best attorneys can seek reduced charges and, in some cases, dismissal.

Defenses A Criminal Attorney May Use to Fight Resisting Arrest Charges

According to Penal Code 148, the actions claimed as resisting arrest must interrupt or delay law enforcement's performance of duties. This is often the first argument an experienced criminal defense attorney will use in fighting charges of resisting arrest. An exceptional defense attorney will get to know you and the details of your case, gathering valuable evidence and testimony to argue against the prosecution. An experienced attorney may show that the arresting officer was not acting in the lawful performance of duties because of no probable cause for arrest or use of excessive force. This defense is growing in effectiveness based on many cases dismissed due to cell phone videos and body cameras. The public has a low tolerance for excessive force by law enforcement, especially with recent cases like George Floyd's arrest, where he lost his life in the arrest process.

In specific cases which involve someone refusing to pull over en route to seeking medical attention, the defense of being under extreme duress is often justified because it was not intentional to avoid arrest but more urgently to get medical attention.

Although attempts to talk one's way out of arrest may seem harmless enough, this resistance will likely lead to more significant fines and penalties in San Diego County. Suppose the defendant said anything during the arrest to show their innocence that ends up being incriminating. In that case, the best criminal defense attorneys know how to present those statements as violating the Fifth Amendment.

In San Diego, facing charges of resisting arrest is considered criminal and punishable by law. Whether someone is facing a misdemeanor or felony, fighting these additional charges is critical to getting life back to normal. Any criminal charges have long-lasting adverse effects on the lives of the defendant and their families. It does not matter how valid the resistance was or if the person arrested is innocent. What does matter is how effective a criminal defense attorney is in the San Diego courts. Only an established and knowledgeable defense lawyer with a proven track record of helping clients fight these charges can help. Only speaking with an experienced criminal defense attorney ensures the highest chance of reduced or dismissed charges. Hiring a top-notch professional to counter any evidence presented by law enforcement and the prosecution is essential.

Please do not wait! Contact the best legal representation immediately for a free consultation.

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