Case Studies: Resisting Arrest

Medical Administrator Avoids Conviction on Charge of Resisting Arrest

A medical administrator, a licensed physician retired from active medical practice but employed in a key hospital role, retained the Lento Law Firm's Criminal Defense Team after police detained him and prosecutors charged him with resisting arrest. Our client had enjoyed an evening out, including imbibing alcohol at an outdoor sidewalk venue. Our client had then taken an evening walk with an alcoholic drink in a to-go cup in his hand. Police patrolling the downtown area, busy with pedestrian life, had noticed our client's unsteady walk and other indications of intoxication. They had followed him to ensure his safety and that he would not enter a vehicle to operate. They also suspected that the drink in our client's hand might be an intoxicant, in which case it would violate a local ordinance. Our client had noticed the officers following him and realized that they could place him under arrest for the drink. So our client had attempted to evade the officers and slip out of their sight, even after they had hailed him to stop when noticing his evasive actions. Our defense approach was to minimize the conviction risk to ensure that our client did not face a medical licensing and employment problem. The prosecutor proposed pretrial diversion, but we successfully negotiated a dismissal on other representations of our client's standing and character and his intentions regarding alcohol assessment and counseling.

Physician Assistant Successfully Defends Resisting Arrest Charge Involving Vehicle Flight

A physician assistant in a metropolitan New Jersey medical practice retained the Lento Law Firm's Criminal Defense Team after prosecutors charged her with resisting arrest. Our client had been driving through an urban area when a police squad car behind her turned on its lights and flashers. Unsure whether the police vehicle was signaling her to pull over and concerned about stopping in a high-crime area, our client sped up and made a sharp right turn. The police vehicle followed her, continuing its signals. Now frightened and still wondering whether the police vehicle was just on its way to a location coincidentally around the same corner, our client once again sped up and made another sharp right turn. The police vehicle also turned, sped ahead of her, and blocked her vehicle's path so that she had to stop, which she maintained she intended to do in any case, having realized the police's intention to stop her vehicle. Police arrested her on the spot, maintaining that they were only going to alert her that her vehicle license tag had expired. Our client had the updated tag in her vehicle's glove box. Our strategic defense focused on our client's confusion, good intentions to get out of the police vehicle's path, fear, and lack of intent to evade police. After our client testified to that effect at trial, the jury acquitted her of the charge. Our client also avoided medical license discipline as a consequence of the acquittal.

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