Throughout history, civil rights groups and activists have helped push for social change through peaceful means of protest. America is proud to recognize heroes like Martin Luther King Jr. who helped peacefully push for African American equality in the legal, economic and educational systems. Recent political turmoil and the emergence of civil rights groups that can reach the masses through the internet has increased the amount of newsworthy protesting.
Last month, the New Jersey Herald reported on protests occurring in St. Louis over the acquittal of a police officer in a wrongful death case. Protesters, according to the St. Louis-area police, failed to disperse when ordered, and the stand-off resulted in twenty-two protesters being charged with resisting arrest. Despite the public outcry and demands for investigations into the “police riot”, the St Louis County and Richmond Heights police argue that their tactics were justified.
Resisting arrest is a serious offense in New Jersey. It is critical to understand that the media and history’s glamorization of protesting and rioting comes with serious real-world consequences. If you are found guilty of purposely preventing an officer from executing a lawful arrest, then you may face up to six months in prison and $1000 in fines. If you are fleeing from officers during a protest in New Jersey, then you could potentially face eighteen months of prison time. Even worse, when you participate in throwing objects at the police, it is considered violence against a police officer. This serious crime comes with severe repercussions and offenders could spend up to five years in prison.
When you or a loved one has been charged with the criminal offense of resisting arrest, it is necessary to seek out expert criminal defense attorney to protect your rights. Even if the arrest is deemed unlawful in court, you can still be charged with resisting arrest. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our experienced legal team at the Law Offices of Michele Finizio at 856-599-5519.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.