When the adrenaline kicks in, or maybe your fight or flight instinct tells you to ‘RUN,’ people sometimes try to get away from the police. Maybe you are accused of trying to get away from the police.
Potential punishments for evading arrest or detention depend on several things, namely, whether or not you were in a vehicle, and whether you failed to stop or were attempting to flee. If accused of running from the police in a motor vehicle, or have a previous conviction for evading arrest – you are looking at Felony exposure.
What is Evading Arrest (Texas Penal Code 38.04) under Texas Law?
TEXAS PENAL CODE Sec. 38.04. EVADING ARREST OR DETENTION.
(a) A person commits an offense if he intentionally flees from a person he knows is a peace officer or federal special investigator attempting lawfully to arrest or detain him.
Laymen’s terms: 1. Intentionally flee, 2. Person you know is a cop, 3. Attempting to lawfully arrest/detain.
- If charged with Evading arrest ON FOOT…the offense is a class A misdemeanor, with a potential punishment of up to 1 year in county jail and a fine not to exceed $4,000.
IF CHARGED WITH EVADING ARREST IN A MOTOR VEHICLE, IT IS A FELONY
38.04(b)(2) EVADING ARREST OR DETENTION (WITH A MOTOR VEHICLE)
(b)(2) An offense under this section is a felony of the third degree if the actor uses a vehicle or watercraft while the actor is in flight.
- If charged with evading arrest IN A MOTOR VEHICLE…the offense is a 3rd degree felony punishable by 2 to10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, and a fine not to exceed $10,000.
What is Eluding Arrest (Texas Transportation Code 545.421)?
This is a lesser known offense that is seldom charged, but is often a more accurate way to describe a situation in which an officer is attempting to arrest or detain someone, but the person does not yield to their authority (they are not necessarily trying to flee, or get away, but just are not yielding to the officers order to stop).
Texas Transportation Code 545.421 Fleeing or Attempting to Elude Police Officer
(a) A person commits an offense if 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.
- Fleeing or attempting to elude a police office is a Class B misdemeanor punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a fine not to exceed $2,000. However, the offense is a Class A misdemeanor if the person, during the commission of the offense, recklessly engages in conduct that places another in imminent danger of serious bodily injury (see the punishment range for class A Misdemeanors above).
CHARGED WITH EVADING ARREST?
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Whether you are accused of evading arrest or detention, or ANY CRIME, do not leave your future up to chance!!!! You need an attorney with a track record of successfully defending criminal cases.
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