Edison NJ Resisting Arrest Lawyer
Criminal Defense Attorneys in Middlesex County, New Jersey
The charge of Resisting Arrest is governed by the same New Jersey Statute as Eluding a Police Officer, both of which are explained in N.J.S.A. 2C:29-2. It commonly occurs in alcohol-related incidents. Sometimes, it is even the result of attempting to flee from law enforcement on foot. Regardless of the specifics, New Jersey aggressively prosecutes resisting arrest crimes. A conviction may result in jail time, probation, mandatory community service, and thousands of dollars in fines. Our firm’s founding partner, Will Proetta, Esq., is an experienced criminal defense lawyer who has defended a wide array of clients from offenses including resisting arrest as well as associated charges such as disorderly conduct and assault throughout New Jersey including East Brunswick, Plainsboro, South Plainfield, Old Bridge, Sayreville, Monroe Township, and Jamesburg. When our clients confront resisting arrest charges, we usually seek to resolve the charges with the prosecution in order to achieve a downgrade or complete dismissal. If that option is not available we are prepared to aggressively litigate your case. To speak with a Middlesex County criminal defense lawyer to discuss your options or build a customized case strategy designed to meet your legal needs, please contact our Edison office at (732) 659-9600 for a free initial consultation.
Resisting Arrest Defense Lawyer in New Brunswick NJ
For your convenience, the New Jersey law governing resisting arrest charges is listed below, in pertinent part.
§ 2C:29-2. Resisting Arrest
a. (1) Except as provided in paragraph (3), a person is guilty of a disorderly persons offense if he purposely prevents or attempts to prevent a law enforcement officer from effecting an arrest. (2) Except as provided in paragraph (3), a person is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree if he, by flight, purposely prevents or attempts to prevent a law enforcement officer from effecting an arrest. (3) An offense under paragraph (1) or (2) of subsection a. is a crime of the third degree if the person:
(a) Uses or threatens to use physical force or violence against the law enforcement officer or another; or
(b) Uses any other means to create a substantial risk of causing physical injury to the public servant or another.
Penalties for Resisting Arrest in NJ
Resisting arrest is typically classified as a disorderly persons offense, punishable by up to 6 months in the county jail, a $1,000 fine, and a criminal record. However, there are certain circumstances in which resisting arrest will be enhanced to a fourth degree crime or a third degree crime. Resisting arrest by flight, meaning an attempt to run away or otherwise flee from a police officer, is a fourth degree crime in New Jersey. A conviction for fourth degree resisting arrest may result in up to 18 months in NJ State Prison. If a resisting arrest offense involves a threat to use violence or force against a law enforcement officer or public servant, this is a third degree crime punishable by up to 5 years of imprisonment. It is also a third degree crime to resist arrest by fleeing in a motor vehicle. This is called “eluding a police officer” and is also a very serious third degree crime. In the most serious cases, eluding police is a second degree crime if the offense creates a substantial risk of death or injury to another person. Second degree eluding may result in a prsion sentence of up to 10 years for those convicted.
Can I Resist an Unlawful Arrest in New Jersey?
What if the officer is attempting to make an unlawful arrest? Can I resist? No. In New Jersey, it is not considered a valid defense that the arrest was not lawful. In other words, if the officer is acting in his official duties and announces his intention to arrest prior to any resistance, you can still be charged with resisting arrest. However, the officer must be acting in the course of his official duties. If he is not doing so or fails to properly indicate his intention to arrest you, this may be used as an effective defense to have resisting arrest charges dismissed.
Contact a Sayreville NJ Resisting Arrest Attorney for a Free Consultation
As illustrated above, resisting arrest is typically a disorderly persons offense. However, it can be upgraded to a fourth degree or third degree felony depending upon the existence of aggravating factors. Additionally, resisting arrest charges can quickly be upgraded to the more serious crime of aggravated assault of a police officer if physical force is used against any arresting officers. If you are facing resisting arrest charges, then it is in your best interest to hire an experienced defense attorney to help resolve the charges. A skilled attorney can greatly increase your chances to get your charges downgraded or dismissed, or to secure admittance into a diversion program. The Law Offices of Proetta & Oliver defends clients for resisting arrest charges throughout Middlesex County and New Jersey including in Carteret, Highland Park, South Brunswick, Metuchen, Spotswood, Middlesex Borough, and Avenel. Our office is conveniently located in Edison. Contact us if you would like to speak with an experienced resisting arrest lawyer, contact us for a free initial consultation at (732) 659-9600.