Fleeing and Eluding, Resisting or Obstructing Police in Michigan

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Fleeing and eluding or resisting and obstructing the police are felony offenses in Michigan. The crux of these offenses is to discourage conduct that would endanger the public and police who are engaged in the lawful performance of their duties such as pulling over a motor vehicle or effectuating a lawful arrest. Our firm has seen an increase in fleeing and eluding cases, as well as resisting and obstructing cases, in Macomb and Oakland Counties. I attribute a lot these cases to situations where the offender is afraid or acting on an impulse due to alcohol or drug use. Other cases involve offenders who have something to hide, have a pending warrant, have drugs in their possession or are driving on suspended license (DWLS) or under the influence (DUI).

Fleeing and Eluding: Pursuant to Michigan Law, the typical fleeing and eluding offense involves a person who fails to pull over and stop his or her motor vehicle after being signaled to do so. At a minimum, the person in this situation can be charged with fleeing and eluding fourth degree which can carry up to 2 years in prison. See Macomb Daily Article, Clinton Township Man arrested for trying to flee police, beer and pot found in car. the offense of fleeing and eluding can carry several years in prison if an accident, injury or death occurs.

Resisting and Obstructing: This offense can be charged when an individual assaults, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties. Resisting and obstructing is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both. The penalties are enhanced if an injury or death occurs.

If you ever get pulled over or arrested, it is best to cooperate. By cooperate, I mean that you should be polite and provide your identification upon request. You should never abscond or attempt to argue or fight with the law enforcement officer. The officer may ask for you to make a statement. Pursuant to the 5th Amendment (right to remain silent), we recommend that you should kindly advise the officer that you do not want to make any statement without first speaking with a lawyer.

In addition to the above, you are required by law to disclose your CCW permit upon being pulled over by the police. The police really get freaked out when they discover that they were questioning someone who has a firearm in his or her possession. The best way to protect yourself in this scenario is to produce your driver’s license and your permit to carry a weapon and say, “officer, I have a permit to carry a firearm and I have a gun in my vehicle or on my person.”

It is always better from a criminal defense attorney point of view when the police report says that the offender was cooperative.