Busted But Not Responsible? Tips For Your Defense

If you've been arrested for a crime you didn't commit, you need to defend your legal rights. You have the right to an attorney who can help you present your case. After being wrongly accused of something myself, I learned quickly how to navigate the legal avenues to have my case dismissed. My attorney was a great resource for building the case, and because of my understanding of the law, it worked. I created this site to share what I learned along the way and some other great tips for others who have been wrongly accused and arrested for a crime.

The Legal Difference Between Defending Yourself Against Excessive Force And Resisting Arrest

Law Blog

When getting arrested, there is a fine line between what is considered resisting arrest and defending yourself against excessive force from the arresting officer. In most cases, a court will side with the police officer, ruling that any violent or defensive moves taken during the arrest process is actually resisting arrest. In certain situations, however, you are legally allowed and justified to defend yourself from excessive brutality from a policeman. Continue reading to learn about the important difference that separates resisting arrest and defensive resisting, where the law may fall in your case, and how to defend against a resist charge in court:

Excessive Force Must Have Been Present

The most important thing that you can prove when you're trying to show the court that you were defending yourself (not resisting arrest) is that the arresting officer used excessive force in the arrest attempt. While this is often very hard to prove, the court will want evidence that if you had not resisted in some way, the officer's actions could have severely injured you (or even killed you).

Proving this is not easy, and even if that can be proved, you'll need to go a step further: showing the court that the level of force you used is vital was understandable given the circumstances. For example, if you used a knife against an officer to stop them from knocking you to the ground and bruising your body, you're likely not going to get anywhere with your case. In order to win your plea, you'll need to have used only the force necessary for self defense.

Cause and Effect

In the end, the courts will be interested in knowing what caused the arresting officer to use violence against you. For example, if the officer suddenly started punching you for no reason after you followed his instructions, you are much more likely to win your case than if you were to have been tackled and tasered after trying to make a run for it when the officer asked you to stand still.

In other words, the court will be interested in knowing what caused the incident in question. Was it an attack that came from completely out of the blue, or did you do something that evoked a response in the officer to react as they did? Talking to your lawyer about the specifics of your case and arrest can help you to determine exactly what you should do moving forward. 

For more information, contact The Law Office of John J. Donohoe or a similar firm.


20 November 2014