Santa Barbara criminal defense lawyer Bill Makler

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Have You Been Charged with Resisting Arrest?

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Resisting Arrest or Assaulting a Peace Officer

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Resisting arrest or assaulting a peace officer is one of the quickest ways to get a ride to jail, if not seriously (even fatally) wounded. If you or a loved one finds themselves in this situation, hiring an attorney experienced in this realm is essential.

In a free and confidential initial consultation, Santa Barbara criminal defense attorney William C. Makler can discuss with you the resisting arrest or assaulting a peace officer charges facing you, a friend, or a family member. If he takes the case, he will use his 20 years of criminal justice experience to achieve the best possible outcome.

Hire a Lawyer Before You Say Anything!

It cannot be said often enough: No matter what you are charged with, you should usually not say anything to the police without a lawyer present. It is usually unwise to tell your side of the story or try to talk your way out of an arrest - you will quite possibly end up getting yourself in even more trouble. Dealing with the criminal justice system can be complex, and the guidance of an experienced lawyer is often very helpful.

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What is Resisting Arrest or Battery on a Police Officer?

California Penal Code § 148 defines Resisting / Delaying / Obstructing Officer or Emergency Medical Technician as follows:
“Every Person who willfully resists, delays or obstructs any public officer, peace officer, or an emergency medical technician… in the discharge or attempt to discharge any duty of his or her office or employment…”

California Penal Code § 243 (c) 1 defines Battery on a Police Officer as:
“Any battery committed against a custodial officer, firefighter, emergency Medical technician, lifeguard, process server, traffic officer, or animal control Officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties…”

You may be charged with either of these offenses if you have had an unwanted contact with either a police officer or an EMT. This conduct can range from delaying an arrest by not complying with the officer’s demands or engaging in a physical altercation with a peace officer. A battery requires unwanted and willful contact.

What am I facing on one (or more) of these charges?

Depending on the nature of the incident, these types of offenses could be charged either as misdemeanors or felonies. A misdemeanor conviction of Resisting Arrest or Battery on a Police Officer carries a maximum sentence of a year in County Jail and a $1,000.00 fine.  If you are charged with a Battery on an Officer, as a felony, you could face a State Prison Sentence of 16 months, 2 years or 3 years.  The sentence you could receive can vary widely depending on your criminal past as well as the unique features of the case.  Your use of any weapon, or any serious injury to the officer (or threat of the same), can cause a sentence of life in prison.

What makes them file a misdemeanor instead of a felony?

This charge is considered a “Wobbler,” which means that the District Attorney has the option to file it as either a felony or a misdemeanor. The District Attorney will consider the facts of the incident in what to charge. The more aggravated the conduct, or if there were injuries to the officers, the more likely the case will be filed as a felony.

Call us now at (805) 892-4922 for a free, no obligation consultation, or fill in your information in the contact form to the right and Mr. Makler will get back to you as soon as possible, frequently within a few minutes.

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