Individuals can face serious criminal charges in California if they cause problems for executive officers. The court system can prosecute these individuals under California Penal Code Section 69: Resisting an Executive Officer.
The legal codes surrounding PC 69 can be complicated and difficult to understand. You can get professional help grasping the details of this charge with the legal team at the Simmrin Law Group.
Go Over the Definition of Resisting an Executive Officer
The state of California defines resisting an executive officer as:
Attempting to Stop an Executive Officer from Carrying Out Their Lawful Duties
Generally, individuals who try to prevent executive officers from carrying out a duty attempt to prevent an executive officer from completing an arrest on someone else. Individuals may use threats or violence to try to stop an arrest. They must act intentionally to be convicted under PC 69.
Actively Defying an Executive Officer Who is Carrying Out a Lawful Duty
Individuals who attempt to resist when an executive officer is trying to arrest them are seen as resisting – or defying – an executive officer attempting to carry out their lawful duty. In order to resist arrest, an individual must use force and must be aware that the officer was carrying out a lawful duty.
Note that many different people are considered executive officers in California. The definition extends past police officers to include:
Individuals are not legally permitted to resist any of these individuals if they are carrying out a lawful duty. A violation of PC 69 can lead to serious legal consequences, so this charge should always be treated seriously.
Charges Similar to Resisting an Executive Officer
There are several criminal charges that resemble PC 69. Individuals could be charged with:
- California Penal Code Section 148: Resisting Arrest
- California Penal Code Section 243(b): Battery on a Peace Officer
- California Vehicle Code Section 2800.1: Evading an Officer
- California Vehicle Code Section 2800.2: Felony Reckless Evading
Generally, resisting arrest is considered less serious than resisting an executive officer. Battery on a peace officer, however, can lead to more severe charges than simply resisting arrest.
Examples of Individuals Resisting an Executive Officer
Ensure you understand PC 69 charges by going over these examples:
A police officer spots a woman who appears to be disturbing the peace and goes to arrest her. Her boyfriend does not want her to be arrested, and attempts to stop the police officer by threatening to use physical force. He could be charged with resisting an executive officer for his actions.
A man is pulled over for driving recklessly. The police officer asks him to step out of his vehicle, and he decides that he does not want to be arrested. The man attempts to knock the police officer down so that he can get back into his vehicle and drive away. He uses physical force and could face charges for resisting an executive officer.
The Penalties for Violating PC 69
Individuals in California can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony for resisting an executive officer. Prosecutors will determine how to charge a PC 69 violation by assessing:
- The Specifics of the Violation
- The Amount of Force Used to Resist
- The Accused’s Criminal History
The penalties for a conviction can include:
Misdemeanor Resisting an Executive Officer
- Fines: Up to $10,000
- Jail Time: Up to 1 Year
Felony Resisting an Executive Officer
- Fines: Up to $10,000
- Jail Time: Up to 3 Years
A professional criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles can assist individuals facing either misdemeanor or felony PC 69 charges.
PC 69 Charges and Criminal Defenses
Beating a PC 69 charge can be incredibly difficult, as it often places the accused’s word against a police officer’s. However, there are some legal defenses that can be used if you are charged with resisting an executive officer.
A criminal defense lawyer could be able to help if you were resisting an executive officer who was not acting lawfully. Executive officers that use excessive force during an arrest are no longer carrying out their lawful duties, and you are allowed to defend yourself in this circumstance.
Get Help Handling a PC 69 Violation Now
Taking on a charge under California Penal Code Section 69: Resisting an Executive Officer on your own can be very challenging. Improve your odds of protecting your freedom by reaching out to the Simmrin Law Group. You can call us at (310) 997-4688 or fill out our online contact form.
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