Tarrant County Evading Arrest Lawyer
If you are charged with evading arrest, retaining an evading arrest lawyer whom you trust can make a major difference in your case. There are countless reasons why someone might appear to be evading arrest when they are really just distracted or scared. Of course, law enforcement is rarely understanding when this occurs, which is why having quality representation is so important.
Remember: You only get one shot at protecting your rights. When you retain representation at Westfall Sellers, you can rest assured that you will be working with a top evading arrest lawyer in Tarrant county.
What is evading arrest and why does it occur?
According to the Texas Penal Code (Sec. 38.04), evading arrest occurs when someone “intentionally flees from a person he knows is a peace officer or federal special investigator attempting to lawfully arrest or detain him.” The Texas State Transportation Code also states that a misdemeanor has been committed “[i]f the person operates a motor vehicle and willfully fails or refuses to bring the vehicle to a stop or flees, or attempts to elude, a pursuing police vehicle when given a visual or audible signal to bring the vehicle to a stop.”
Note that evading arrest is different from resisting arrest in that, when someone evades arrest, they are simply fleeing the scene, not physically interfering with the arrest.
Some people evade arrest simply because being approached or pulled over by a police officer can be a nerve wracking experience. Their judgement may have become clouded due to fear and they may have been unable to fight the urge to run away. When you are pursued by law enforcement, it is important to not resist or attempt to talk your way out of it. If you’re curious about what to do if you are approached by the police, read our articles: The Police Came to My House and Should I Talk to the Police?
Of course, even if you unknowingly “flee” from a law enforcement officer, law enforcement may still charge you with evading arrest. But that doesn’t mean those charges have to stick. First, they must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that there was intent to evade on your part. Your evading arrest lawyer can help you build a case that you were simply distracted (by traffic, by the weather, by your radio).
What is the punishment for evading arrest in Texas?
The penalties and charges for evading arrest depend on factors including how you fled from the scene and if you were previously convicted of this crime. Unfortunately, some convictions for evading arrest can be processed as felonies.
If you fled from law enforcement on foot:
- Class A misdemeanor
- Up to 1 year in county jail
- Up to $10,000 in fines
Note: You could also be charged with a class A misdemeanor under the Texas State Transportation Code.
If you committed this crime in a vehicle or water vessel:
- State jail felony – 4th degree
- 180 days – 2 years in state jail
- Up to $10,000 in fines
If you were been previously convicted of this crime:
- State jail felony – 3rd degree
- 2-10 years in state jail
- Up to $10,000 in fines
Again, it’s one thing to be charged, it’s another to be convicted. Because the consequences of evading arrest can be so steep, it’s always wise to consult with an evading arrest lawyer to see if you have a case for getting the charges dropped.
Why an evading arrest lawyer is vital for your defense
The attorneys at Westfall Sellers have dedicated years to successfully fighting for the rights of our clients.
As with other types of criminal accusations, including organized criminal activity cases, proving charges for evading arrest is all about intent. In order to be convicted for evading arrest, the state has to prove two things:
- That you are guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the intention of evading arrest or detention, and;
- That you were indeed committing an action that warranted your arrest in the first place, (even if you fled).
The defense attorneys at Westfall Sellers will investigate the facts of your case to determine if any of your constitutional rights were violated during your interaction with the police and if your arrest was warranted and lawful.
Any mistakes made by police can be used as your defense, including:
- Police did not identify themselves properly
- The attempted arrest was indeed not lawful
- Your Miranda Rights were not read to you at the time of the arrest
- The evasion was not intentional, but a misunderstanding
These mistakes by law enforcement can be used to help either get your charges dropped, your sentence decreased, or have your case thrown out by a judge. Our thorough investigation process is what differentiates us from other defense lawyers.
Contact an Evading Arrest Lawyer from Westfall Sellers today
At Westfall Sellers, our lawyers are ready to clear your name against federal and criminal misdemeanors and charges, including evading arrest. We deliver aggressive, client-focused defense to protect your interests.
Don’t let a misunderstanding land you in jail and paying thousands of dollars in fines.
Call us now at (817) 345-7978, or complete the contact us online to request a free consultation.