Resisting an Officer with Violence Attorney

Felony Resisting Defense Attorney

I am an experienced resisting an officer with violence lawyer & former prosecutor who defends all Orange County & Seminole County felony and misdemeanor resisting an officer cases.  I believe in hard work and personalized representation. Once hired, I will:

  1. Collect and review all written, audio and video evidence;
  2. Search for any video evidence not disclosed by the State;
  3. Determine the lawfulness of your arrest;
  4. Identify all possible defenses, and
  5. Do whatever is necessary to avoid a resisting an officer conviction.

police cars

How is Resisting Arrest With Violence Defined in Florida?

Resisting an officer with violence is defined in Florida Statute 843.01.  Resisting an officer without violence is defined in Florida Statute 843.02. Both offenses define resisting as obstructing an officer while the officer is in the execution of a lawful duty. To be convicted of resisting an officer with violence, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you:

  1. Knowingly and willfully resisted by offering to do violence,
  2. At the time the officer was engaged in the lawful execution of a legal duty, and
  3. The officer was a law enforcement officer,
  4. And you knew the person was an officer at the time of the incident.

Examples of Resisting an Officer with Violence

The most minor of actions can form the basis of a resisting an officer with violence allegation in Florida. Some examples of resisting an officer without violence are:

  1. Physically struggling with the police officer
  2. Fighting with the officer
  3. Punching or kicking the officer
  4. struggling with a police officer while being detained

All of these actions can form the basis of a resisting an officer with violence charge in Orlando, Florida.

Defenses to Resisting an Officer with Violence

Officer was not Executing a Legal Duty

There are multiple defenses available to challenge a resisting arrest with violence charge in Florida. A primary defense to “Resisting an Officer” charges in Florida is establishing the officer was not executing a legal duty. If it can be shown the interaction between the suspect and police officer was a consensual encounter and the suspect was not subject to a lawful detention, then not cooperating does not constitute the offense of Resisting an Officer With Violence in Florida.

No crime occurred

A second defense to resisting arrest with violence is where the crime just did not happen. If there is no actual resistance, opposition, or obstruction, the offense of resisting an officer did not happen. If the arrestee’s actions were not “violent” within the meaning of the statute, crime has been committed. This is a factual determination left for the jury. Often, the officer’s allegations do not rise to level of resistance, or there is video or other evidence that contradicts the officer’s allegations. Flinching or tensing up when being handcuffed, thrown against the police car or being tackled can be seen as unintentional actions that do not rise to the level or resisting or opposing within the meaning of Florida Statute 843.01, the “Resisting an Officer With Violence” statute in Florida.

Didn’t know the person was an officer

A third defense to the charge of resisting an officer with violence is showing the accused was not aware the arresting officer was in fact a police officer. This is often an issue in situations where the officer is off duty or is acting in an undercover capacity. It can also become an issue where there is a crowd, or a physical altercation involving multiple parties. An accused may think someone is attacking him from behind, or may resist an officer before becoming aware that an officer has intervened.

Excessive Force Defense

A fourth defense to felony resisting an officer in Florida is a showing the officer used excessive force. Although a simple arrest, whether lawful or unlawful, may never be resisted with violence, any excessive force accompanying such an arrest may be defended against. Sometimes it can be shown the officer acted with a level of force that was inappropriate. In such cases, a defendant is entitled to a jury instruction on excessive force and/or self-defense (the use of non-deadly force), and can even cross-examine the officer regarding prior complaints of excessive force. Thus, an officer’s arrest history is fair game if relevant to an excessive force or self-defense claim.

Important Facts of Your Resisting an Officer Case

Every resisting an officer with violence case is different. It is important to analyze the specific facts of your case to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the State’s case against you. Important factors to consider are:

  1. Were there any witnesses to the incident?
  2. Were you asked to provide a written or oral statement?
  3. How did you interfere with the investigation?
  4. Was the police officer in the lawful execution of a legal duty?
  5. What specifically, if anything, did you do to oppose the officer?
  6. Was your conduct lawful?
  7. Did you have the right to oppose the officer?

Your Constitutional Rights in a Resisting Arrest Case

The constitution guarantees that people be free from unlawful police conduct. You have the legal right to resist an unlawful arrest without violence. It is important for you to know if any of your constitutional rights were violated when determining the legitimacy of the State’s case against you. Important legal concerns are:

  1. Were you lawfully detained?
  2. Did you make any statements regarding this incident?
  3. Were you read your Miranda rights?
  4. Were any statements you made illegally obtained?

Pretrial Diversion for Resisting an Officer With Violence

Pre-trial diversion (PTD) and Felony Pre-trial Intervention (PTI) are voluntary programs offered by the State Attorney’s Office for all resisting charges. Your PTD or PTI eligibility will be based on the following criteria:

  1. The facts of your specific case
  2. Your criminal history or lack of criminal history
  3. Input from the police officer
  4. Approval from your prosecutor
  5. Approval from your prosecutor’s division chief

If you are approved for diversion and successfully complete the program, the State Attorney’s Office will drop your charges.

I Defend all Felony & Misdemeanor Resisting Charges

If you have been accused of resisting an officer with or without violence in Orange County or Seminole County, call me to speak with an experienced Orange County resisting an officer with violence lawyer. I offer a free consultation to discuss your legal options. In addition to keeping extended business hours my office is open every Saturday. Call 407-740-7275 to speak directly with me.

Felony Resisting Defense Attorney

I am an experienced resisting an officer with violence lawyer & former prosecutor who defends all Orange County & Seminole County felony and misdemeanor resisting an officer cases.  I believe in hard work and personalized representation. Once hired, I will:

  1. Collect and review all written, audio and video evidence;
  2. Search for any video evidence not disclosed by the State;
  3. Determine the lawfulness of your arrest;
  4. Identify all possible defenses, and
  5. Do whatever is necessary to avoid a resisting an officer conviction.

police cars

How is Resisting Arrest With Violence Defined in Florida?

Resisting an officer with violence is defined in Florida Statute 843.01.  Resisting an officer without violence is defined in Florida Statute 843.02. Both offenses define resisting as obstructing an officer while the officer is in the execution of a lawful duty. To be convicted of resisting an officer with violence, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you:

  1. Knowingly and willfully resisted by offering to do violence,
  2. At the time the officer was engaged in the lawful execution of a legal duty, and
  3. The officer was a law enforcement officer,
  4. And you knew the person was an officer at the time of the incident.

Examples of Resisting an Officer with Violence

The most minor of actions can form the basis of a resisting an officer with violence allegation in Florida. Some examples of resisting an officer without violence are:

  1. Physically struggling with the police officer
  2. Fighting with the officer
  3. Punching or kicking the officer
  4. struggling with a police officer while being detained

All of these actions can form the basis of a resisting an officer with violence charge in Orlando, Florida.

Defenses to Resisting an Officer with Violence

Officer was not Executing a Legal Duty

There are multiple defenses available to challenge a resisting arrest with violence charge in Florida. A primary defense to “Resisting an Officer” charges in Florida is establishing the officer was not executing a legal duty. If it can be shown the interaction between the suspect and police officer was a consensual encounter and the suspect was not subject to a lawful detention, then not cooperating does not constitute the offense of Resisting an Officer With Violence in Florida.

No crime occurred

A second defense to resisting arrest with violence is where the crime just did not happen. If there is no actual resistance, opposition, or obstruction, the offense of resisting an officer did not happen. If the arrestee’s actions were not “violent” within the meaning of the statute, crime has been committed. This is a factual determination left for the jury. Often, the officer’s allegations do not rise to level of resistance, or there is video or other evidence that contradicts the officer’s allegations. Flinching or tensing up when being handcuffed, thrown against the police car or being tackled can be seen as unintentional actions that do not rise to the level or resisting or opposing within the meaning of Florida Statute 843.01, the “Resisting an Officer With Violence” statute in Florida.

Didn’t know the person was an officer

A third defense to the charge of resisting an officer with violence is showing the accused was not aware the arresting officer was in fact a police officer. This is often an issue in situations where the officer is off duty or is acting in an undercover capacity. It can also become an issue where there is a crowd, or a physical altercation involving multiple parties. An accused may think someone is attacking him from behind, or may resist an officer before becoming aware that an officer has intervened.

Excessive Force Defense

A fourth defense to felony resisting an officer in Florida is a showing the officer used excessive force. Although a simple arrest, whether lawful or unlawful, may never be resisted with violence, any excessive force accompanying such an arrest may be defended against. Sometimes it can be shown the officer acted with a level of force that was inappropriate. In such cases, a defendant is entitled to a jury instruction on excessive force and/or self-defense (the use of non-deadly force), and can even cross-examine the officer regarding prior complaints of excessive force. Thus, an officer’s arrest history is fair game if relevant to an excessive force or self-defense claim.

Important Facts of Your Resisting an Officer Case

Every resisting an officer with violence case is different. It is important to analyze the specific facts of your case to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the State’s case against you. Important factors to consider are:

  1. Were there any witnesses to the incident?
  2. Were you asked to provide a written or oral statement?
  3. How did you interfere with the investigation?
  4. Was the police officer in the lawful execution of a legal duty?
  5. What specifically, if anything, did you do to oppose the officer?
  6. Was your conduct lawful?
  7. Did you have the right to oppose the officer?

Your Constitutional Rights in a Resisting Arrest Case

The constitution guarantees that people be free from unlawful police conduct. You have the legal right to resist an unlawful arrest without violence. It is important for you to know if any of your constitutional rights were violated when determining the legitimacy of the State’s case against you. Important legal concerns are:

  1. Were you lawfully detained?
  2. Did you make any statements regarding this incident?
  3. Were you read your Miranda rights?
  4. Were any statements you made illegally obtained?

Pretrial Diversion for Resisting an Officer With Violence

Pre-trial diversion (PTD) and Felony Pre-trial Intervention (PTI) are voluntary programs offered by the State Attorney’s Office for all resisting charges. Your PTD or PTI eligibility will be based on the following criteria:

  1. The facts of your specific case
  2. Your criminal history or lack of criminal history
  3. Input from the police officer
  4. Approval from your prosecutor
  5. Approval from your prosecutor’s division chief

If you are approved for diversion and successfully complete the program, the State Attorney’s Office will drop your charges.

I Defend all Felony & Misdemeanor Resisting Charges

If you have been accused of resisting an officer with or without violence in Orange County or Seminole County, call me to speak with an experienced Orange County resisting an officer with violence lawyer. I offer a free consultation to discuss your legal options. In addition to keeping extended business hours my office is open every Saturday. Call 407-740-7275 to speak directly with me.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email