You don’t want to have an encounter with the police. On a walk through your neighborhood, you spot an officer coming toward you. It looks like he’s just walking on patrol, not coming toward you specifically, but you turn and start jogging the opposite way. Have you done anything wrong?
You have not. This is not illegal. You are under no obligation to go near a police officer or talk to them. You’re not breaking the law by running away. You’re free to do whatever you want.
However, be aware that this action can cause things to spiral out of control. Police officers have been given the leeway to see running as suspicious behavior, especially in areas where crime is common. Though some call this a double standard, it does happen. They may see you turn and run and decide to chase you down because they think that your actions make it look like you have something to hide.
Say you keep running. Knowing you have done nothing wrong, you actively begin trying to escape the police as they chase you. Maybe they try to grab you and you pull away and run. Are they now going to charge you with resisting arrest? If you have something illegal in your pocket, like a marijuana pipe or a joint, can you be charged with an additional offense? Did the police have a right to arrest you in the first place?
If you’re facing an arrest related to running from the police, you may have all of these questions and many more. Be sure you take the time to find the answers and look into your defense options if you get arrested. An experienced advocate can help you figure out what happens next.
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