How can I prove that I was not resisting arrest? 44 Answers as of June 09, 2013

The police officer didn't tell me to put my arm behind my back and I was talking on the phone then he came and grabbed my arms and put them behind my back and handcuffed me. Can I be charged with resisting arrest?

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Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC
Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC | Jacob Peter Sartz IV
My first advice would be to obtain an attorney to assist you with this matter. This response does not contain specific legal advice. If you need specific legal advice for your own circumstances, I recommend consulting with an attorney experienced with these types of matters. Most attorneys provide free initial consultations. Simply because a person is charged does that mean that they will be found guilty. Anyone charged is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 10/6/2011
Lewis & Dickstein, P.L.L.C.
Lewis & Dickstein, P.L.L.C. | Loren Dickstein
You can be charged but that does not mean you will be convicted. The prosecutor will have to prove your guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Hire a good criminal defense attorney.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/30/2011
Donahue, Sowa & Magana Attorneys at Law
Donahue, Sowa & Magana Attorneys at Law | Glenn M. Sowa
Can you be charged with resisting? Yes, if you made any physical movement in an effort to thwart the arrest. Should you be charged with resisting arrest? Probably not. Unfortunately, the statute and courts give wide discretion to a police officer when charging resisting arrest. Even a simple tug of your arm against the police officer's effort to handcuff you may be enough to sustain a charge of resisting arrest. Inaction, or no action, by a defendant when being arrested is generally not enough to sustain a conviction.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 8/24/2011
Austin Legal Services, PLC
Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
Unfortunately, this is one of the most over-charged crimes there is. It is not up to you to prove that you were not resisting, if is up to the prosecutor to prove that you were resisting. This is a felony so you need to have an experienced attorney by your side who can help you along the way. If the case is as weak as you say, he may even be able to make a motion to dismiss. If not, you can accept a plea bargain or take your chances infront of the jury. The prosecutor will have to show that you were knowingly resiting or not complying with an order of so
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/24/2011
Law Offices of John J. Connors, Esq.
Law Offices of John J. Connors, Esq. | John J. Connors, Esq.
To be successful in a resisting arrest case, the Commonwealth must prove that you took some affirmative action to hinder the police in their attempt to arrest you. Chapter 268, Section 32B of the general laws states that resisting occurs when a person knowingly prevents or attempts to prevent a police officer from effecting an arrest by using or threatening to use physical force or violence against the police officer or another or using any other means which creates a substantial risk of causing bodily injury to such police officer or another. there must be more than what you state here. You need to speak to a competent criminal defense lawyer.
Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    If you are charged with a crime, you may challenge the facts at trial. The state must prove all elements of the crime they charge. Your attorney may be successful in convincing the prosecutor that the facts are deficient. You should consult with an attorney with the facts specific to your case.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Office of Geoffrey M. Yaryan
    Law Office of Geoffrey M. Yaryan | Geoffrey M. Yaryan
    You can only be charge with "resisting arrest" if the officer had probable cause to arrest you for some criminal violation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Offices of Jeffery A. Cojocar, PC
    Law Offices of Jeffery A. Cojocar, PC | Jeffery A. Cojocar
    Yes you can. You need to retain an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 6/9/2013
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    Yes you can be charged. But you will need an attorney in order to fight the matter. Remember if the jury has reasonable doubt that you were trying to resist then they must find you not guilty.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/20/2011
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    You can be charged with obstructing legal process or resisting arrest. Your defense would require undermining the officer's credibility at trial with cross examination and conflicting witness testimony.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law
    Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law | Thomas J. Tomko
    You can always be charged. The question is whether or not they can prove the case, and whether or not an agreement can be made that you can live with. These questions are not answered until you get to Court. The best advice is to hire an attorney to go over the details of yoru case and then to come up with an agreed strategy to address your concerns and any charges. I hope that this was helpful.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Andrew Subin
    Law Office of Andrew Subin | Andrew Subin
    Whether you were resisting will be up to a jury. Obviously, the cop will testify that he thought you were resisting; you will testify that you were not. I do not know how the jury will come out on that one.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
    Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
    You can be charged with resisting arest but they would have to prove it at trial. One issue to be decided would be whether you did or did not hear the officer tell you to put your hands behind your back.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    If the officer charged you with resisting arrest and another charge they usually dismiss the resisting charge when you plead to a reduction on the case. It's not a serious charge and if you go to trial it will be hard for the prosecutor to prove. You will usually be found not guilty unless you fought with the officer or did something repeatedly to resist arrest. Simply not following his initial orders not enough to convict you of that ambiguous charge.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Anderson Walsh PLLC
    Anderson Walsh PLLC | STACI LYNN ANDERSON
    You can be charged. If you are, you need to request discovery, which will hopefully include an audio or video recording. A recording will be your best opportunity to demonstrate you were not resisting arrest as you were never informed that you were under arrest. If there is no recording, your testimony will be evaluated against that of the officer at trial.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 9/20/2012
    Law Office of Roianne H. Conner
    Law Office of Roianne H. Conner | Roianne Houlton Conner
    Yes you can if the police officer directed you to put your arms behind your back and you refused. You need to hire an attorney to represent you and to present your defense that you did not hear the Order.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    You can be charged with resisting arrest. Contact me with all the facts so I can tell you if you can be convicted of resisting arrest.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    It is nearly impossible to prove a negative, that is why the burden of proof is on the state to prove that you did resist arrest. Hopefully, the person on the phone with you is available as a witness to what happened. Additionally, there are lots of video cameras around if the arrest occurred near a bank or gas station? You can be charged with resisting arrest if the officer alleges that you pulled away ever so slightly. The charge itself does not mean that you are guilty. The best thing you can do is hire a good lawyer who handles criminal defense cases exclusively.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Palumbo and Kosofsky
    Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
    You need competent criminal defense counsel and our office can represent you.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    Unless you are charged, you don't have to prove anything.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    Normally, anytime the police officers have to be physical with you for any reason during an arrest, you will be charged with resisting arrest, even if you are not resisting (such as on the phone). The best way to win one of these cases is to have witnesses testify, if they were present, that you did nothing to resist. If you have no witnesses you will not have a great chance of winning the case as it would be your word against the officer's word.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    How? By using all possible defenses with whatever admissible and credible witnesses, evidence, facts and sympathies are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or at trial. Your word versus his, you lose. If you havent been charged, you dont have anything to defend or prove. If serious about hiring counsel to help in this, and if this is in SoCal courts, feel free to contact me. Ill be happy to help use whatever defenses there may be.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Michael Maltby, Attorney at Law
    Michael Maltby, Attorney at Law | Michael Maltby
    You can be charged with resisting arrest, but on these facts I doubt you could be convicted. A lot of times an aggressive officer meets up with a citizen who is inexperienced in dealing with the "man" such that the officer takes it wrong. Normally a prosecutor can appreciate this when he/she gets the whole story such that these types of cases don't go far.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law
    Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law | Michael R. Nack
    You can be charged with anything. If you are charged with a crime you need to hire an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Frances R. Johnson
    Frances R. Johnson | Frances R. Johnson
    It comes down to your credibility versus the police officer, and depends upon how he testifies you were resisting arrest (how he alleges you prevented or attempted to prevent him from arresting you).
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    Were you charged with resisting arrest? If so, then you know you can be charged with it. You need to hire a lawyer. If there were any witnesses, you need to provide the lawyer with complete contact information for the witnesses. The lawyer will want to explore the underlying basis for the arrest. I always love when a cop arrests someone for resisting - what were they arresting them for in the first place if there were no other charges filed?! The lawyer might get the cop's internal affairs records which may supply names of people with complaint's like yours. He may be able to run the names of the other defendants in the county arrested by this officer who might be able to shed some light on him. He may be a member of a lawyers' association that shares information and someone might have information on this cop. You need to hire a lawyer as quickly as possible.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Eric J Schurman, Attorney at Law
    Eric J Schurman, Attorney at Law | Eric James Schurman
    It's possible, but there's not much that can be done now. If you do get charged, feel free to call to discuss further
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
    You can be charged with anything. The prosecutor has to prove it. The officer will say you did, you will need witnesses who say you didn't.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum | Edward J. Blum
    Yes. You can be charged with anything. The real question is can they prove you were resisting arrest. Your cell phone records will show you were talking at the time the officer was hassling you. That may help your case. Call me, this is something I can help you with.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Neal L. Weinstein
    Law Office of Neal L. Weinstein | Neal L. Weinstein
    Get the person you were talking to and have him make a statement about what he heard on your end
    Answer Applies to: Maine
    Replied: 8/19/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Of course you can. Cops make things up all the time.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Watkins Law Office
    Watkins Law Office | Bob Watkins
    It sounds like you were charged with resisting arrest. It is the State's burden to prove you did resist; not your burden to disprove.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    You can get charged with anything. It's what that can be proved that matters.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    The English Law Firm
    The English Law Firm | Robert English
    The actual charge for PC 148 is resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer. If it was a legal detention and you ignored his instructions, then that could be an obstruction or delay. Whether that would "stick" in the long run is up to a jury if you were to try the matter.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin
    Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin | Maureen Furlong Baldwin
    Have you been charged with resisting arrest? Sometimes in situations where there has been a scuffle or battery involving an arrest, an individual is charged with resisting the lawful command of an officer. The problem is that it usually comes down to your word against the word of the officers. Unless the officer has actually given you a lawful command, such as "place your hands behind your back" or "hang up your cell phone during this investigation" there is no valid resisting arrest charge. You really need to see the police report.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady | Kevin O'Grady
    You will need to discuss with your attorney the specific facts of the situation and have him review the police reports. You need to hire an attorney to properly defend you.
    Answer Applies to: Hawaii
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    Without looking at the case and the facts, and the allegations of the arresting offices, I am unable to answer that question. Consult with an attorney
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    John Segelbaum, P.S.
    John Segelbaum, P.S. | John Segelbaum
    The prosecutor has the burden of proving the charge. They have to prove that you intentionally resisted the efforts of a police officer to arrest you. You don't have to prove anything. However, you need an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    You can be charged with anything as long as the prosecutor has probable cause to charge you. That doesn't mean a jury will convict you. It sounds like you may have failed the "personality test." If you were on the phone, the officer may have ordered you to hang up. If you didn't, he would have taken that as your being defiant or disrespectful. However, you have to struggle or pull away or otherwise attempt to prevent the arrest to be guilty of resisting arrest. However, you will have to go to trial to beat it in all likelihood.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
    Obviously, you can be charged. The question is can you be convicted. The answer is still yes. It is very hard to beat a resisting arrest charge unless you have incontrovertible witness accounts that will overcome the policeman's testimony. There are only two ways to determine a criminal charge, either through plea and admission, or through trial. The only way that you get to challenge the charge is through trial. If that is the choice you elect, the prosecution must prove to either a judge or a jury (your choice as to which), beyond a reasonable doubt, that you committed the crime for which you are charged. You certainly shouldn't try this on your own as you will be expected to know the substantive law and the rules of evidence and procedure, just like an attorney, if you tried the case yourself. The chances of you prevailing under those circumstances are slim to say the least. Even with counsel, the police officer is going to testify that he tried to arrest you and you offered resistance. Although you are not required to offer any defense whatsoever, if you allow the officer to swear to this under oath and do not offer any rebuttal evidence, it will be hard to win. Hire a lawyer and let him/her advise you. I would never advise a client to admit guilt if he/she is not guilty. However, sometimes just understanding what the law really is will cause you to rethink your position. Hire a good lawyer and take their advice.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Law Offices of Martina A. Vigil, PC
    Law Offices of Martina A. Vigil, PC | Martina A. Vigil
    Your attorney should request any audio or video available. This will further your defense.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Grant & Grant
    Grant & Grant | Richard L. Grant, Esq.
    Best way to prove it is with testimony of eye witnesses, picture, or videos. It is best that you hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who regularly practices in the court where you case is filed. It will make a difference in the outcome of your case. If you need further assistance or information, please contact myself.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
    Attorney at Law
    Attorney at Law | Michael J. Kennedy
    You can be charged with anything; your question is whether they can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed that crime, and, of course, they probably cannot: that is what a trial is all about. A 148 or 69 resisting is far more complex than can be digested in a one sentence presentation of what you did or didn't do.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2011
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