Anoka County Criminal Lawyer & Attorney
Our entire lives we are warned that we need to listen to the authorities. However, there are times when a person doesn’t listen or they may engage in an act that is perceived as not listening and this results in a charge of obstruction of justice. You may or may not have seen someone pay the consequences of not complying with the demands of a police officer or resisting arrest. If you have, then you know the penalties are serious.
If you have been accused of obstruction of justice, it is important that you seek legal representation by an experienced Anoka criminal defense lawyer so that you can effectively make your case and fight the allegations against you. Sometimes obstructing justice becomes a catch all offense or the charge was not warranted in the first place.
Helping You Understand The Charges Against You
There is no doubt that the charges have you confused. You may not have realized that you were doing anything wrong, let alone doing something that would cause criminal charges to be filed against you. However, some common examples of obstruction of justice include the following:
- Fleeing a police officer – This includes fleeing on foot or fleeing in a vehicle because fleeing interferes with the legal process.
- Witness tampering – Threatening a witness in a criminal trial in exchange for testimony that is anything but truth.
- Escape – Escaping law enforcement after being arrested. This can include escape from a hospital or passing an individual off to another person in order to enable them to escape.
- Interfering with a dead body – Moving or touching a dead body, taking evidence from the body, or interfering with the body in any way that could contaminate the evidence.
- Warning a suspect that they are being investigated – If a person is warned that they are being investigated by the police, the person who does the warning is interfering with the investigation and this is seen as obstruction because it can put the safety of the public at risk.
- False reporting – If a crime is falsely reported, it is considered a crime because of the money and resources involved.
Revealing The Facts In Your Case
Even when guilty of obstruction, there are ways that a strategic defense can reduce the consequences. If obstruction did not happen, then it must be proven that it didn’t so that the right outcome can be had. No matter what, your Minnesota criminal defense lawyer will work hard to prove what did happen and what did not happen in your case.
As for the penalties, if convicted, they depend on what type of obstruction occurred. For instance, resisting arrest has a penalty of up to $700 in fines and 90 days in jail. Resisting arrest with force can result in $3,000 in fines and up to 1 year in jail. If there was a risk of bodily harm or death, then the penalty is up to $10,000 in fines and 5 years in prison. You and your attorney can work hard to avoid these penalties.