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Resisting Arrest – California PC 418(a)(1) and Penal Code 69 PC: Prosecution

Arrested for Resisting Arrest or Obstructing a Police Officer in California and Charged under PC 148?

If you have been charged with resisting arrest or obstructing a police officer in California, it is important to understand what this crime entails.

Our California criminal attorneys at Wallin & Klarich want to share with you what the prosecution needs to prove in order to convict you of resisting arrest.

Resisting Arrest Under the California Penal Code

If you are facing charges for resisting arrest, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich can provide you with the guidance you need during this difficult time.
Are you facing charges for resisting arrest under PC 148? Call us today so we can fight on your behalf.

California Penal Code section 148(a) makes it illegal to willfully resist, delay, or obstruct any public officer, peace officer, or emergency medical technician (EMT) in the discharge of his or her official duties. In order to convict you of resisting arrest in Los Angeles, the prosecution must prove the following:

1. The victim was a peace officer/public officer/EMT lawfully performing or attempting to perform his or her official duties  AND

2. You willfully resisted/obstructed/delayed the victim in the performance or attempted performance of those duties  AND

3. When you acted you knew, or reasonably should have known, that the victim was a peace officer/public officer/EMT performing or attempting to perform his or her duties
If it is alleged that you took a firearm or weapon from the official under California PC 148 (b), (c) or (d), the prosecution must also prove that:

  1. While you resisted/obstructed/delayed the officer in the performance of his or her duties, you took or removed a firearm/weapon from the officer’s immediate presence

To find you guilty of resisting arrest, the prosecution must prove you acted willfully

You commit an act willfully when you do it willingly or on purpose. It is not required that you intended to break the law, hurt someone else, or gain any advantage.

Additionally, the prosecution must prove you resisted, delayed or obstructed

The prosecution must prove that you resisted, delayed or obstructed an officer in the performance of his or her duties. Both physical and verbal acts can satisfy this requirement as long as they hindered the officer in his or her official capacity.

Physical acts of resistance can include running away, hiding, attempting to avoid being handcuffed or placed in a police vehicle, and attacking a public officer. Verbal acts of resistance can include providing false identification information, refusing to identify yourself during the booking process, and failing to verbally acknowledge an officer’s order.

Also, the prosecution must prove you engaged in the performance of official duties

In order to be found criminally liable under California Penal Code section 148(a), the peace officer, public officer or EMT must have been engaged in the performance or attempted performance of his or her duties. A police officer is engaged in the performance of his duties if he or she was detaining you for questioning, making a lawful arrest, exercising a lawful search, or conducting an investigation. An EMT is engaged in the performance of his duties if he or she was providing or attempting to provide medical attention to you or another person.

The prosecution must prove that you knew or reasonably should have known

Did you obstruct a police officer or EMT in the performance of his or her duties?
To be convicted of resisting, delaying or obstructing a peace officer, it must be proved that you reasonably knew the officer or EMT was in the performance of his or her duties.

You must have known or reasonably should have known that the officer or EMT was engaged in the performance of his or her duties.

This is an objective standard in which the jury must find that a reasonable person in your position would have been aware of this fact based upon a totality of the circumstances. If the officer was in uniform or driving a clearly marked government vehicle, the jury will be more likely to find that you knew of should have known the official was engaged in the performance of his duties.

The alleged victim is a peace officer, public officer, or EMT

Any person who is employed as a police officer is considered a peace officer for purposes of this offense. In addition, any person who is employed by a government agency is considered a peace officer if he is designated as such by the director of that agency. An emergency medical technician (EMT) is someone who holds a valid certification issued by an organization licensed to issue such certification.

Related Offense – Battery on a Police Officer

Under California Penal Code section 243(c)(1) and (2), it is illegal to commit a battery against a police officer, custodial officer, firefighter, EMT, lifeguard, process server, traffic officer, or animal control officer engaged in the performance of his or her duties. In order to convict you of this offense, the prosecution must prove:

  1. The victim was a peace officer performing his or her duties  AND
  2. You willfully and unlawfully touched the officer in a harmful or offensive manner  AND
  3. When you acted you knew or reasonably should have known that the victim was a peace officer who was performing his or her duties

Harmful or Offensive Touching

The prosecution must prove that you touched a police officer in a harmful or offensive manner. This is an objective standard which means that a reasonable person in the victim’s position must have found the touching harmful or offensive.

The slightest touching can be enough to commit a battery if it is done is a rude or angry way. Making contact with the officer, including through his or her clothing, is sufficient to constitute a touching for purposes of this offense. The touching does not have to cause pain or injury of any kind and can also be done indirectly by causing an object or someone else to make contact with the officer.

Call Wallin & Klarich Today

Wallin & Klarich PC 148 lawyers
Call us today for a free phone consultation.

If you or someone you know has been charged with resisting arrest under PC 148, you need to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who is dedicated to giving you the best representation possible.

With offices in Orange County, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Ventura, Victorville and West Covina, Wallin & Klarich has successfully represented clients facing resisting arrest charges for over 30 years. Drawing from our extensive experience, our talented defense lawyers will thoroughly review your case and develop an effective defense strategy to win your case.

Call us today at 877-4-NO-JAIL or fill out our confidential form for a free phone consultation. We will get through this together.

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