top of page

resisting arrest


Law enforcement agency professionals are responsible for serving and protecting the public. However, some people make it difficult for police officers to perform their jobs effectively. Whenever a law enforcement agency professional is unable to perform his or her duty serving the public because of the actions of one or more people, the State of Georgia considers the act of interfering to be obstruction of justice. Also referred to as resisting arrest, obstruction of justice can be levied as a charge carrying either a misdemeanor or a felony punishment.

Resisting arrest can lead to charges of other crimes, especially if resisting arrest escalates into one or more violent crimes. If you face a charge of resisting arrest in Georgia, you need to contact a licensed criminal defense lawyer who specializes in litigating obstruction of justice cases. The highly rated team of criminal defense lawyers working for Garland Law Group clients perform an exhaustive investigation into resisting arrest charges, before developing a plan of legal action that leads to a not guilty verdict.

How Georgia Law Defines Resisting Arrest

For a misdemeanor obstruction of justice conviction, Georgia Penal Code O.C.G.A. §16-10-24(a) states “A person will be guilty of violating when they knowingly or willfully obstruct or hinder any law enforcement officer in the lawful discharge of his official duties.” The punishment for a misdemeanor resisting arrest conviction can result in a fine not to exceed $1,000 and/or a prison sentence up to one year. At the judge’s discretion, anyone convicted of a misdemeanor obstruction of justice crime can also be required to perform community service and/or participate in anger management classes.

A felony conviction for resisting arrest in Georgia is defined by Georgia Penal Code O.C.G.A. §16-10-24(b): “A person can be convicted of felony obstruction when they knowingly and willfully resist, obstruct, or oppose any law enforcement officer, prison guard, correctional officer, community supervision officer, probation officer, or conservation officer in the lawful discharge of his or her official duties by offering or doing violence to the person.” The penalty for a felony conviction on an obstruction of justice charge is jail time between one and five years and/or a minimum fine of $300.

Types of Resisting Arrest Charges in Georgia

Resisting arrest is a criminal charge that involves several different types of actions. Each obstruction of justice action carries with it a unique penalty that is administered by a judge hearing the case. Because of the large number of types of resisting arrest charges, it is important for defendants to work closely with a licensed criminal defense attorney who has a strong record of successfully defending clients against obstruction of justice charges.

Here are the types of charges that accompany resisting arrest cases:

  • Threatening a law enforcement officer

  • Hitting a law enforcement officer

  • Running away from a law enforcement officer

  • Resisting arrest by using force

  • Resisting arrest by not using force

  • Lying to a law enforcement officer

  • Hampering a law enforcement investigation

  • Providing misleading information to a law enforcement officer

  • Verbally taunt a law enforcement officer


Defending Resisting Arrest Charges in Georgia

In Georgia, as in every other state, the prosecution is responsible to prove the guilt of defendants in criminal cases “Beyond a reasonable doubt.” As the highest litmus test for guilt in the United States criminal justice system, “Beyond a reasonable doubt” is often the pathway to prove the innocence of defendants charged with resisting arrest.

Even the best law enforcement officers make an occasional mistake, whether the mistake is the collection of tainted evidence or the calling of eyewitnesses that cannot give accurate accounts of the obstruction of justice incident. At Garland Law Group, our team of resisting arrest attorneys presents evidence that plants the seed of reasonable doubt into the mind of one or more members of the jury, as well as a judge presiding over an obstruction of justice case. We present physical evidence exonerating our clients, as well as call credible witnesses to the stand to testify on behalf of our clients.

Here are some other ways to defend resisting arrest defendants:

  • No intent to commit the crime

  • Lack of evidence

  • No probable cause for making the arrest

  • Law enforcement officer did not legally conduct his or her duties


Violation of Constitutional Rights

No probable cause for making an obstruction of justice arrest falls under the category of violations of Constitutional rights. Another way a law enforcement officer can violate the Constitutional rights of the accused is by not properly reading the defendant his or her Miranda rights: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?”

Garland Law Group Helps Clients Beat Resisting Arrest Charges

Facing a resisting arrest charge is a stressful experience for many reasons. A felony conviction will show up on your background report for the rest of your life, which will negatively impact your career and any searches conducted for housing. This means you cannot afford to wing it with an inexperienced criminal defense lawyer.

bottom of page