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Resisting, Fleeing and Eluding

Everything you need to know when facing a resisting, fleeing or eluding charge, and how we attack the issue head on to either vindicate you or mitigate your sentencing

What Are the Different Resisting, Fleeing and Eluding Charges in Michigan?

To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. The accused assaulted, battered, wounded, resisted, obstructed, opposed, or endangered a police officer or state authorized person;
  2. The accused knew or had reason to know that the complainant was a police officer or state authorized person performing his or her duties at the time;
  3. The complainant gave the accused a lawful command, was making a lawful arrest, or was otherwise performing a lawful act; and 
  4. The accused actions caused death, serious impairment of a body function; or a bodily injury requiring medical attention or medical care.

Special Considerations

  • “Obstruct” includes the use or threatened use of physical interference or force or a knowing failure to comply with a lawful command.
  • “Person” for purposes of this statute is defined to include police officers, deputy sheriffs, firefighters, and emergency medical service personnel, among others. MCL 750.81d(7)(b).
  • A defendant has the right to resist illegal police conduct, including unlawful arrests and unlawful entrees into constitutionally protected areas.

Penalty

  • Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both;
  • Causing a bodily injury: Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 4 years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both;
  • Causing a serious impairment of a body function: Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both;
  • Causing death: Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 20 years or a fine of not more than $20,000.00, or both

To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. A police officer was in uniform and was performing his or her lawful duties and that any vehicle driven by the officer was adequately marked as a law enforcement vehicle;
  2. The accused was driving a motor vehicle;
  3. That the officer ordered that the defendant stop his or her vehicle;
  4. The accused knew of the order;
  5. The accused refused to obey the order by trying to flee or avoid being caught; and
  6. The violation resulted in the death of another individual.

Special Considerations

  • The death must have only resulted from defendant’s acts. Those acts must not have been the proximate cause of death.

Penalty

  • Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both

To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. A police officer was in uniform and was performing his or her lawful duties and that any vehicle driven by the officer was adequately marked as a law enforcement vehicle;
  2. The accused was driving a motor vehicle;
  3. That the officer ordered that the defendant stop his or her vehicle;
  4. The accused knew of the order;
  5. The accused refused to obey the order by trying to flee or avoid being caught; and
  6. The violation resulted in serious impairment of a body function to an individual; Or
  7. The accused has one or more prior convictions for first-, second-, or third-degree fleeing and eluding; or attempted first-, second-, or third-degree fleeing and eluding; or
  8. The accused has any combination of two or more prior convictions for fourth-degree fleeing and eluding, or attempted fourth-degree fleeing and eluding.

Special Considerations

  • The definition of “serious impairment of body function” can be found at MCL 257.58c

Penalty

  • Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years or a fine of not more than $5,000.00, or both

To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. A police officer was in uniform and was performing his or her lawful duties and that any vehicle driven by the officer was adequately marked as a law enforcement vehicle;
  2. The accused was driving a motor vehicle;
  3. That the officer ordered that the defendant stop his or her vehicle;
  4. The accused knew of the order;
  5. The accused refused to obey the order by trying to flee or avoid being caught; and
  6. The violation resulted in a collision or accident; Or
  7. Some portion of the violation took place in an area where the speed limit was 35 miles per hour or less; or
  8. The accused has a prior conviction for fourth-degree fleeing and eluding, or attempted fourth-degree fleeing and eluding.

Special Considerations

  • It is not necessary that the accused’s vehicle be involved in the resulting accident.

Penalty

  • Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years or a fine of not more than $1,000.00, or both

To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  1. A police officer was in uniform and was performing his or her lawful duties and that any vehicle driven by the officer was adequately marked as a law enforcement vehicle;
  2. The accused was driving a motor vehicle;
  3. That the officer ordered that the defendant stop his or her vehicle;
  4. The accused knew of the order;
  5. The accused refused to obey the order by trying to flee or avoid being caught.

Special Considerations

  • This visual or audible signal may be given by hand, voice, emergency light, or siren.

Penalty

  • Felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or a fine of not more than $500.00, or both

What will we do as your Defense Attorney?

These are very serious charges that require an aggressive defense in which all of the facts of the case are thoroughly reviewed. We listen carefully to what our clients tell us in order to both put together a strong defense and mitigate sentencing. We do this in several ways.

First, we never take for granted that the police report is an accurate representation of the incident in question. These reports are usually very biased towards convicting the accused, and are therefore often filled with inconsistencies. We use our client’s testimony, research, private investigators, and crime scene visits to poke holes in the prosecution’s case, and ultimately, prove your innocence or argue that the facts are so that a lenient sentence is appropriate. We always visit the scene of the crime. It’s the only way to learn details showing that the police investigation was flawed or that the prosecution’s eyewitness could not have seen what he or she claims.

Prosecutor’s often try to add the charge of interfering with a police officer maintaining the peace when it should not be added. That offense requires some active interference greater than mere fleeing and eluding. We keep them honest and reduce charges when the facts are so inclined.

If the accused is between the ages of 17 and 24 they may be eligible to qualify for a sentence under the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act (HYTA). This Act allows the client to plead guilty, but have the offense dismissed by the court if he or she satisfies the terms set by the court. HYTA does not apply to any felony where the maximum penalty is life imprisonment (such as First Degree Arson). With that said, we always try to plea down to a non–life offense such as simple Second Degree Arson, so that HYTA is available. 

Convincing the prosecutor to reduce the charge should always be on the table.  Mitigating factors that we look out for are things like the state of mind of the accused. Was he or she afraid of the officers due to past experiences? Also important is the nature of the fleeing and whether the resulting injury or accident was truly the client’s fault. In other words the punishment must fit the crime or we will not stand for it. 

Schedule a free consultation!

No retainer necessary! Just tell me what’s on your mind and we can plan the next steps for your success!

Why work with us?

  • Tenacious representation for an AFFORDABLE PRICE!
  • Weekend meetings & Consultations Available!
  • Educated on Modern Issues & Laws!

Email: kerrylawpllc@gmail.com

Tel: (734) 263-1193

Address: 214 S. Main St. Ste 200
                 Ann Arbor MI, 48104
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