Obstruction of Law Enforcement Officer O.C.G.A. 16-10-24
Why You Should Fight Your Atlanta Georgia Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer Charge
Obstruction of justice is a broad term that includes a number of crimes. These crimes involve doing something that hinders a police investigation or ability to complete their duties. These crimes range from resisting arrest to interfering with police business and trying to influence a witness. All of these crimes are classified as Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer.
Another type of obstruction is called obstruction of a law enforcement officer. It is found under Georgia’s criminal statute 16-10-24.
What is Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer in Atlanta Georgia?
According to the statute, an individual is guilty of hindering a law enforcement officer if they willfully and knowingly obstructs or hinders a law enforcement officer. The law enforcement officer must be working in an official capacity for an individual to be guilty of the crime.
The law does include other individuals who work are not considered a police officer like:
- Prison guard
- Probation officer
- Parole supervisor
- Conservation Ranger
- Court official
The Circumstances that will cause You to be Arrested for Obstruction in Atlanta Georgia
Obstructing the duties of a law enforcement officer involves more than just not talking to police. It must an act of hindering the officer from doing their officials duties like:
- Interfering with a criminal proceeding
- Interfering with a criminal investigation
- Giving false statement or information
- Hiding legal documents
- Falsifying legal documents
- Destroying legal documents
- Tampering with legal documents
- Interfering with an arrest. You are not the person being arrested. For example, your loved one is getting arrested and you stand between them and the officer. The hope is to stop or hinder the arrest.
- Lying to law enforcement officer
- Giving false information to police
- Falsifying evidence
- Hiding evidence
- Destroying evidence
- Tampering with evidence
- Attempting to influence a witness or juror
- Threatening a witness or juror
- Threatening an individual for helping a police officer
- Threatening police for investigating you and/you’re your family member
- Trying to bribe a law enforcement officer, witness, judge or juror. The alleged bribery can be pertaining to your case or a loved one’s case.
Criminal Punishment for an Atlanta Georgia Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer
This is a felony charge if the prosecutor can prove you knowingly and willfully interfered with the police. If you are convicted, you will face one to five years in prison.
However, if you are convicted of willfully obstructing a law enforcement officer during his official duties, it is a misdemeanor. The misdemeanor charge is 12 months in county jail.
Defenses for Obstruction of Justice in Atlanta Georgia
You have a ton of defenses to use for defending yourself against an obstruction of justice. The problem is about choosing the right defense. Some common defenses of obstruction of justice include claiming a mental defect. This means that you did not understand that you could not run from the police or interfere with police duties because of a mental disability.
The accusation that you interfered with law enforcement is false. You can claim that the law enforcement lied when they arrested you for obstruction. You will have to prove you are innocent of the charge.
Lack of intent. You had no intent to obstruct justice or police duties. You have to intentionally commit the crime to be convicted. If you did not intentionally do it, you are not guilty of the crime.
Actual innocence. You are actually innocent of the criminal charge. In this defense, you have the burden of showing that you were someone else during the alleged crime or there is another reason why you are not guilty.
Lack of evidence. The evidence is vital in any criminal case. The state has to use evidence to prove you are guilty of the charge beyond a reasonable doubt. Your attorney must evidence to show you are innocent. If the state does not have enough evidence, you cannot go to trial. The state typically will not drop the charge on its own. Instead, they may offer a plea deal or go to trial anyway. By presenting this defense you force the state to either drop the charge or go to court.
These common defenses might not be for your situation. That does not mean that you do not have a chance to defend yourself in the case. You can. Instead, your attorney will have to figure out the best defense strategy for you.
Georgia Defense Force is Your Attorney for an Atlanta Georgia Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer
If you or a loved one has been charged with obstruction of a law enforcement officer, contact us right away.
We have defended countless clients charged with obstruction. We will sit down with you and/or loved one and review your criminal charge during a free case evaluation. During the free case evaluation, we will discuss your potential defenses and address any concerns you have regarding your case.
This may seem like non-issue charge. Maybe you think the prosecutor over your case will decide not to prosecute a minor charge like this, but they will. In fact, they may try to make you an example to stop other people from obstructing a law enforcement.
Please understand that you an attorney who is just as serious as you are in positively resolving your charge. That is why we are here. Contact Georgia Defense Force, LLC today.