A person who has been charged with resisting an officer in Florida with or without violence is usually facing other criminal charges. Prosecutors will use allegations of such conduct to seek longer terms of incarceration for alleged offenders.
While these types of crimes may not be the most serious charges a person is facing, they can reduce the likelihood of an alleged offender being offered any type of diversion program. When officers suffer any type of injuries, prosecutors will more aggressively pursue prison sentences.
West Palm Beach Resisting Arrest Lawyer
If you have been accused of resisting an officer in South Florida, you will want to make sure that you have highly skilled legal counsel. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. defends clients in such communities as Boynton Beach, Lake Worth, Greenacres, Delray Beach, Wellington, and many more.
Our Palm Beach County resisting arrest attorneys will fight to have your charges reduced or possibly even completely dismissed. You can have us review your case during a free, confidential consultation by calling (561) 557-8686 today.
Florida Resisting Arrest Information Center
- Who are the types of officers a person can be charged with resisting?
- What are some of the consequences for alleged offenders if they are convicted?
- Are there any defenses that can be used against these charges?
Resisting Arrest Charges in Palm Beach County
There are two different charges relating to resisting an officer. For the purposes of these statutes, an officer is defined as being any of the following:
- Law enforcement officer
- Correctional officer
- Correctional probation officer
- Part-time law enforcement officer
- Part-time correctional officer
- Auxiliary law enforcement officer
- Auxiliary correctional officer
- Member of the Florida Commission on Offender Review or any administrative aide or supervisor employed by the commission
- County probation officer
- Parole and probation supervisor
- Personnel or representative of the Department of Law Enforcement
- Any other person legally authorized to execute process in the execution of legal process or in the lawful execution of any legal duty
The specific criminal offense a person may be charged with will be one of the following:
- Resisting Officer With Violence to His or Her Person, Florida Statute § 843.01 — This is the charge if an alleged offender knowingly and willfully resists, obstructs, or opposes any officer in the execution of legal process or in the lawful execution of any legal duty by offering or doing violence to the person of such officer or legally authorized person. It is classified as a third-degree felony.
- Resisting Officer Without Violence to His or Her Person, Florida Statute § 843.02 — Also known as ROWOV, this is the charge if an alleged offender resists, obstructs, or opposes any officer in the execution of legal process or in the lawful execution of any legal duty without offering or doing violence to the person of the officer. It is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor.
Resisting Arrest Penalties in West Palm Beach
First-time offenders may be eligible for probation, but many people—including those with criminal histories or previous convictions relating to resisting an officer—can be more likely to face imprisonment and fines if convicted. Depending on the specific charge, the consequences may include:
- First-Degree Misdemeanor — Maximum sentence of one year in jail and $1,000 maximum fine
- Third-Degree Felony — Maximum sentence of five years in prison and $5,000 maximum fine
Even if an alleged offender does receive probation, a conviction will still result in a criminal record that can create additional problems for an alleged offender in regards to employment, loans, or housing. An experienced lawyer can help work to get the best possible outcome with the fewest long-term consequences.
Florida Resisting Arrest Defenses
Many of these types of cases rely strictly on the testimony of the arresting officer. It is critical for an alleged offender to have a knowledgeable attorney who can fully investigate the arrest and possibly use strong defenses that may include, but are not limited to:
- Alleged offender did not knowingly and willfully resist, obstruct, or oppose arrest
- Alleged offender used self-defense against an officer’s unreasonable use of excessive force
- Alleged offender was unaware the individual he or she was resisting was an officer
- Alleged offender’s actions did not constitute offering or doing violence
- False allegations
- Unlawful arrest
Find a Resisting Arrest Lawyer in Palm Beach County
Were you recently charged with resisting an officer in South Florida? You should seek legal representation as soon as possible to make sure the court hears your side of the story.
Meltzer & Bell, P.A. defends clients in Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter, Royal Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Riviera Beach, and many surrounding areas. Our West Palm Beach resisting arrest attorneys will provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case as soon as you call (561) 557-8686 to schedule a free consultation.