Charged with resisting arrest in CO? Learn what you’re facing.
If you are being arrested by a police officer in Colorado, you must comply. If you fail to do so, you may be charged with resisting arrest.
What Is Resisting Arrest in Colorado?
The crime of resisting arrest is defined in Colorado Revised Statutes section 18-8-103, which reads that a person commits the act of resisting arrest if they knowingly prevent or attempt to prevent a police officer from affecting the arrest by:
- Using or threatening to use force or violence against the police officer; or
- Using any other means “which creates a substantial risk of causing bodily injury to the peace officer or another.”
The statute continues to read that resisting arrest is a class 2 misdemeanor in the state of Colorado.
Resisting Arrest Penalties in Colorado
If you are charged with resisting arrest in Colorado, you will face the penalties associated with a Class 2 misdemeanor. The punishment for resisting arrest (class 2 misdemeanor) includes a minimum of three months in jail, a $250 fine, or both and up to 12 months in jail, $1,000 fine, or both.
If you do not have a prior history, it is possible that jail time will be waived in place of probation, which is obviously preferable. It is strongly recommended that you secure legal counsel immediately if you are facing the charge of resisting arrest.
Defenses to Resisting Arrest in Colorado
As a person who is charged with a crime in Colorado, you have the right to defend yourself against those charges.
However, defending yourself against the charge of resisting arrest can be complicated, especially because Colorado statute reads that “it is no defense…” to claim that the police officer was “…attempting to make an arrest which was in fact unlawful…” if the police officer was acting “under color of his official authority.”
This means that the officer was acting in the course of their regular duties and made a judgment in good faith based on the facts and circumstances surrounding arrest.
However, one defense that can be made against the crime of resisting arrest in Colorado is that the arresting officer resorted to excessive and unreasonable force in attempting to arrest you, which in turn gave rise to the right of self defense.
You may also defend yourself against resisting arrest, if applicable, by asserting that the officer who arrested you was not in uniform or did not identify themselves as a police officer at the time that the arrest was being made.
You cannot simply claim that you were being unlawfully arrested, or that you did not commit the crime for which you were being arrested, as a defense to resisting arrest. Even if you did not commit the crime for which you were being arrested, it is unlawful to resist such an arrest.
It is critical to discuss the details of your resisting arrest charges with an experienced defense lawyer who has produced successful outcomes in such cases. If no reasonable defense is available, your attorney can assist by negotiating a plea deal with the prosecution.
Defense Attorney Miller Leonard Can Help You
Being charged with a class 2 misdemeanor crime such as resisting arrest in Colorado can have serious consequences, including a large fine, a period of incarceration, and a mark on your criminal record. To defend yourself against charges and secure the best outcome possible for your case, you need a skilled Colorado criminal defense attorney on your side.
Call the law office of Miller Leonard, PC today for a consultation with a lawyer who cares about you.