Seaside Heights Criminal Defense Lawyer
Did you have a frightening run-in with the law in Seaside Heights and make a split-second decision to run away? Or did you resist a DUI or DWI arrest because you thought it was unlawful? There are many different reasons for fighting with police or fleeing from an officer, but if you've been charged with resisting arrest, one thing is certain: you need a Seaside Heights resisting arrest lawyer.
Charged with Fleeing an Officer in Seaside Heights?
I am Anthony N. Palumbo, a Seaside Heights Resisting Arrest Lawyer and partner at the Ocean County law firm Palumbo & Renaud. I have been practicing criminal and municipal law in New Jersey for over 35 years and I know the defenses you need to win your case. Don't plead guilty without knowing your rights. Contact me today through the email form on my website or at 1-866-664-8118 for a free initial consultation.
The following page provides an overview of the possible penalties for charges of resisting arrest and eluding an officer. Please remember that a Seaside Heights defense lawyer is crucial to your defense, and this page is in no way a replacement for consulting with an attorney regarding the facts of your case.
Seaside Heights Resisting Arrest
A person commits the offense of resisting arrest if he purposely prevents or attempts to prevent a law enforcement officer from arresting him. The possible penalties vary with the circumstances in each case:
- If you purposely prevent or try to prevent the police from arresting you, then you'll be charged with a disorderly persons offense, which carries a penalty of up to 6 months in prison.
- The charge is increased to a fourth degree offense, punishable by up to 18 months in prison, if you purposely prevent or try to prevent the police from arresting you and you do it by running away or otherwise fleeing an officer.
- The charge is increased to a third degree offense, subject to a possible jail term of 3 to 5 years, if at the same time you resist your arrest, you also:
- use threats or physical force against the police; or
- use threats or physical force against any other person; or
- do anything at all that creates a high risk of injuring someone.
Unfortunately, you can be charged with resisting arrest even if arrest was unlawful. As unfair as it may seem, there is never a right to resist the police, illegal arrest or not. If the arrest was in fact unlawful, then the charges will be dropped later, but if you resisted the arrest, you'll be charged with a separate offense that can't be avoided.
Seaside Heights Eluding an Officer
Eluding an officer is similar to resisting arrest but occurs when you fail to pull over for a police officer or flee from the police in a car or other type of vehicle. In addition to imprisonment and fines, eluding offenses often result in driver's license suspensions. Possible penalties are as follows:
- If you're driving any kind of a vehicle and the police give you any kind of signal to pull over, and you flee or otherwise try to get away from the police, then you could be charged with a third degree offense, which carry penalties of 3 to 5 years in prison and suspension of your driver's license for 6 months to 2 years.
- The offense can be upgraded to a second degree crime if, while eluding an officer, you create a risk of death or injury to anyone at all, including yourself. A conviction for eluding an officer in the second degree would carry a possible punishment of 5 to 10 years in prison, along with suspension of your driver's license for 6 months to 2 years.
- If you're under 17 years old when you elude an officer, the license suspension period is determined by the court.
- And if your license was already suspended or revoked, the new suspension term begins when the previous suspension ends.
As with resisting arrest, you can be charged with eluding an officer even if the police officer had no reason to stop your vehicle. As a result, you should always pull over at the first available safe location when signaled by an officer.
Seaside Heights Hindering and Obstruction
The offense of hindering apprehension or prosecution is committed when a person either:
- harbors or conceals another person who committed a crime, or otherwise helps him to evade apprehension, prosecution, conviction or punishment; or
- hinders his own apprehension or prosecution.
Hindering is generally a disorderly persons offense, but it can be upgraded to a second, third, or fourth degree crime based on the facts of the case and the underlying offense.
A person commits the offense of obstructing administration of law if he purposely obstructs, impairs or perverts the administration of law or other governmental functions or prevents or attempts to prevent a public servant from lawfully performing an official function. Obstruction is generally a disorderly persons offense, subject to a penalty of up to 6 months in prison.
Having a Seaside Heights Defense Attorney by Your Side
If you've been charged with resisting arrest or eluding an officer in Seaside Heights, the best thing that you can do is to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney. An Ocean County resisting arrest lawyer can help you to understand the charges that you're facing and the best defenses that might be available to you.
For a free and confidential consultation, you can contact me, Anthony N. Palumbo, through the email form on my website or at 1-866-664-8118. As a former prosecutor and current New Jersey criminal defense lawyer with more than 35 years of experience, I have a strong reputation among other lawyers and judges and I know exactly what it takes to successfully defend your case. I have obtained countless downgraded or dismissed charges when defending clients charged with resisting arrest, and I can help you too.