Resisting Arrest in Indiana
A Central Indiana man suspected of driving a stolen vehicle led New Castle and Knightstown police officers on a high-speed, three-county car chase after officers tried to pull him over. The man, whose driving privileges had been already suspended for life, crashed in northern Rush County and allegedly fought the officers before being taken into custody. He is charged with two counts of resisting arrest, among other things.
What is resisting arrest in Indiana?
Indiana law considers a person to be resisting arrest if they:
- knowingly or intentionally forcibly resists, obstructs, or interferes with a law enforcement officer engaged in the execution of their duties, or
- knowingly or intentionally flee from a law enforcement officer after the officer has identified themselves as law enforcement and has ordered the person stop by visible or audible means.
What are the penalties for resisting arrest in Indiana?
Resisting arrest can range from a misdemeanor to a level 5 felony, depending on the circumstances of the case.
- A Class A misdemeanor conviction may bring up to one year in jail and a fine up to $5,000.
- A Level 6 felony conviction can bring up to 2.5 years of jail and fine up to $10,000
- A level 5 felony conviction can bring up to 6 years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000
Defenses to resisting arrest
Law enforcement may characterize a broad array of actions as resisting arrest–but they aren’t always correct. Some officers might wrongly consider a “bad attitude” or talking back as grounds for resisting arrest, or they might interpret a person’s failure to understand instructions as resisting arrest.
Other times they get the level of the charge wrong. For example, if an officer charges you with forcibly resisting arrest, you must have used actual force for the charge to stand. Passive resistance is insufficient.
In some cases, you may have a valid defense for resisting arrest if the arresting officer used unreasonable and excessive force against you.
Despite these potential defenses, if you believe that you’re unfairly charged with resisting arrest, it’s best to nonetheless comply with the officer’s instructions and let your criminal defense attorney fight on your behalf. You will be in a much stronger legal position if you remain calm and let your lawyer take on the police for you.
Experienced Indiana Resisting Arrest Attorney in Your Corner
If you have been unfairly charged with resisting arrest in Indiana, call the qualified criminal defense lawyers of Razumich & Associates. We are ready to aggressively investigate the facts surrounding your case and fight for you. Contact us today.