Resisting arrest by a police officer has become a significant issue across the nation recently. It’s been long understood that law enforcement officers will manipulate statements and evidence to support their claims, so you may be charged with resisting arrest even if you weren’t actually resisting. Unfortunately, this is one of the charges that is subjective and based on the observations of the arresting officer.
What Constitutes Resisting Arrest
If you are arrested by an officer of the law, you may not:
- Intentionally acting in a way that prevents the police from arresting you
- Acting in a way that is a danger to the officer arresting you or other officers at the scene
- Pulling away from the officer who is trying to restrain you
- Running away from the officer placing you under arrest
- Striking, hitting, or pushing police officers while they try to restrain you
- Giving a police officer false identification
- Pulling a weapon on a police officer while they attempt to arrest you
- Threatening a police officer
- Passively resisting the officer
- Playing “dead weight” and making the law enforcement officer drag or carry you to the police vehicle
Evading the police in your vehicle is also technically a form of resisting, however, it brings about a different type of charge. If you evaded the police when they attempted to pull you over, the likelihood of being charged with resisting arrest is much higher, even if the arrest itself goes smoothly.
What Is Not Resisting Arrest
- Swearing or cursing at officers, provided you do not make threats of any kind
- Acting in self-defense against cruel and unusual behavior from law enforcement
- Resisting the restraint of a person who has not identified themselves as an officer of the law nor is wearing any identifying clothing, such as a uniform
- The arrest itself was unlawful or a false arrest, therefore resisting arrest cannot apply if no legitimate or legal arrest occurred
Even those these actions are not among those that would technically be considered resisting, police officers will often use them anyway to try to convince a judge that you were being combative and resistant during your arrest.
Even if no proof of resistance exists, if you were rude or swore at the officers, this makes it easier for the judge presiding over your case to side with law enforcement.
When to Get Legal Help After Being Charged With Resisting Arrest
Get help after an arrest as soon as possible. Don’t talk to the police or anyone else until you’ve spoken with a lawyer. Contact Llinas Law Immigration & Criminal Defense today at 860-530-1781.