When someone is being arrested by the police, caution should be exercised because any resistance to the arrest can constitute a crime. In Arizona, resisting arrest is defined in one of three ways:
Passively resisting arrest or passive resistance is committing a nonviolent physical act, or failure to act, that is intended to impede, hinder or delay the making of an arrest. For example, if one refuses to follow the directions of a police officer such as putting their hands up, turning around or getting out of a vehicle, that action may count as passive resistance.
Arizona Resisting Arrest Laws at a Glance
The penalties for resisting arrest in Arizona are covered in the below table.
A person commits the crime of resisting arrest if they prevent a peace officer from making an arrest by: (1) using or threatening to use force against the peace officer or (2) using any other means creating substantial risk of injury to the peace officer or another. The penalties for resisiting arrest are:
Passively Resisting Arrest
A person commits passive resistance by performing a nonviolent physical act or failure to act that is intended to impede, hinder or delay the making of an arrest.
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
There are various defenses to resisting arrest, including not possessing the intent to resist arrest, using self-defense in response to excessive or unreasonable police force, proving that there was no arrest and proving that the defendant was unaware that the person making the arrest was a peace officer or police officer.
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As you can see, resisting arrest can carry serious criminal penalties. However, as also discussed above, there may be many defenses that could be raised due to the broad language of the statute. If you want to learn more about the penalties or defenses associated with resisting arrest in Arizona, you can contact a local attorney for a free initial case review at no obligation today.
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