22nd Oct 2019
A criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale can provide a viable defense against charges of obstruction of justice crimes when there is no violent outburst by the person charged. If you are charged with obstructing a law enforcement officer when he or she was carrying out legal duties at the time, you will need to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale to discuss valid defenses.
Definition of Obstruction of Justice Without Violence
Obstruction of justice involves interference with a law enforcement officer in some manner that impedes his or her legal duties or an ongoing investigation. For example, the police officer is working at the time; either by carrying out legal processes or engaging in legal execution of duties for the state. The officer can include a deputy, correctional officer, probation officer or someone serving a subpoena or warrant.
Penalties for Obstruction of Justice
When there is no violence associated with the charges, the crime is considered a first-degree misdemeanor with possible penalties of up to one year in jail and as much as $1,000 in fines. The penalties often include one year of probation.
Defending against Obstruction of Justice Without Violence Charges
Some of the possible defenses to obstruction of justice charges include the following:
- Self-defense when the individual is facing excessive force or an imminent threat of bodily harm
- Unknown status involves the lack of knowledge the person was an officer
- Protected speech involves only speech used rather than any physical altercation
- Unlawful arrest provides a defense when the arrest is not valid and provides the individual with a right of passive resistance against the officer