What Is The Offense Of Resisting An Officer In Louisiana?
Police officers have a very important job and interfering with their duties, or making it more difficult for them to work can constitute a criminal offense. It is not only against the law to interfere with a police officer in the line of duty but also wildlife enforcement officers, parole officers, and other government officials. Interfering with these individuals while they are in the line of duty is known as resisting an officer and being charged can result in a conviction for either a misdemeanor or a felony.
If you have been charged with resisting an officer, it is critical that you speak to a Monroe criminal defense lawyer. Below, our experienced attorney outlines this offense and the possible defenses available.
What Constitutes Resisting an Officer?
Any time a person disrupts a law enforcement officer that is on duty, it can be interpreted as resisting an officer. Some of the most common examples that constitute this crime include:
- Running from a police officer trying to make a lawful arrest,
- Physically resisting a police officer during an arrest,
- Causing injury to a police officer who is on duty,
- Making threats to a police officer who is on duty,
- Refusing to provide identification when asked by an officer,
- Providing an officer with false identifying information,
- Remaining in a public place after a government official has asked you to leave, and
- Entering a location that has been closed-off or sealed.
The above are just a few of the most common ways people resist an officer. However, any time someone interferes with a government official’s ability to do their job, it could be considered resisting an officer.
Resisting an Officer Can be Charged as a Misdemeanor or Felony
Resisting an officer can result in either misdemeanor or felony charges. When violence is not involved, a misdemeanor charge will apply. This offense is punishable by up to six months in jail, a maximum fine of $500, or both. If violence or force is used while resisting an officer, the charge is upgraded to a felony. If convicted, the penalties for a felony are between one and three years in prison, a maximum fine of $2,000, or both.
Defenses to Resisting an Officer
Being charged with resisting an officer is scary, but there are defenses available. The most common of these include:
- The officer was conducting an unlawful arrest, and
- There are factual errors within the police report.
Even when the above factors are present, it is recommended that no one resists an officer, as it will always result in additional charges even if you are found innocent of the initial offense the officer was arresting you for.
Contact Our Criminal Defense Lawyer in Monroe for a Free Consultation
If you have been charged with resisting an officer, it is critical that you speak to a Monroe criminal defense lawyer. At Whiddon Criminal Defense, our experienced attorney can help you avoid the harsh penalties that come with a conviction, as well as a criminal record that will follow you for the rest of your life. Call or text us now at 318-387-2776 or contact us online to schedule a free review of your case.