Remember, if you are not doing anything illegal, in theory, you CAN run from an officer who approaches you. The police are allowed to stop you if he/she has a reasonable suspicion that you are breaking a law. We dealt with this very law throughout October. This month was extremely busy at Cook & Cook. The attorneys went to trial for a client that was charged with running from the police, a charge that is formally called “evading detention”.
This criminal charge “evading detention” has multiple elements (or parts) including: 1. A person INTENTIONALLY; 2. Fled; 3. From a person the Defendant KNEW was a police officer; 4. While the Defendant was being LAWFULLY detained.
In our Client’s case, the officer had stopped our Client for walking on the roadway when a sidewalk was provided. This walking on the roadway was the police officer’s basis for conducting a traffic stop. That is what I call a poor man’s law. It is the type of law police only enforce in poor neighborhoods. We are proud to announce that our client was acquitted after his 3 day long jury trial on October the 21st!
The jury returned a verdict of “Not Guilty”. All of the Attorneys went back to the jury room after the case to find out what persuaded the jury. The jury explained that they felt the stop was UNLAWFUL (remember the stop has to be LAWFUL in order to find a defendant guilty of “Evading detention”).
We were thrilled to see our client walk away without a dent on his criminal record, which was perfectly clear prior to the evading charge. Now, he needs to get the case expunged so that it does not affect his future job outlook.