In a recent case coming out of an Arizona court, the defendant appealed his conviction for resisting arrest. Even though the defendant did not contest that he had physically resisted the officers when they tried to arrest him, he argued on appeal that the entire case should have been dismissed because of the illegal acts committed by the arresting agency. The court denied the defendant’s appeal, and his conviction was affirmed.
Facts of the Case
According to the opinion, officers had an arrest warrant on the defendant based on suspicion of drug trafficking. The officers located the defendant and followed him into a parking lot, surrounding his vehicle. The defendant immediately locked himself in the car and ignored the officers’ orders to exit. After a few moments, the defendant picked up an ax and struck the K-9 dog that officers sent in to try and remove him from the vehicle.
When the defendant eventually exited the car, he ignored orders from the officers and put his hands underneath him to avoid giving officers control of his arms or hands. The officers used a taser on the defendant, and they eventually put him in handcuffs. After the arrest, the officers found bags of methamphetamine on his person.
The defendant was indicted on four counts of aggravated assault, one count of resisting arrest, one count of drug possession, and one count of drug paraphernalia possession.
On appeal, the defendant made an argument that was less based on procedure and more based on the conduct of the police officers. According to the defendant, the officers were acting in bad faith. There are “often illegal acts committed by arresting agencies,” said the defendant, and this arrest was one example of how poorly police officers treat criminal suspects in general. What’s more, said the defendant, the officers’ personal vengeance against him was a driving force of the investigation, and he should not have been targeted as a suspect in the first place.
The court addressed the defendant’s appeal in a quick and concise opinion, stating first that the defendant’s argument was overly broad and not based in specific facts of the case. The court then concluded that the defendant was essentially asking the court to entirely reconsider the evidence of the case, and it was not appropriate for the court to conduct this kind of investigation. The court reviewed the record for arguable issues of law and found nothing that could support the defendant’s claim. Thus, the defendant’s conviction was ultimately affirmed.
Have You Been Charged with Violent Crimes in Arizona?
If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges in Arizona, give us a call at The Law Office of James E. Novak. We are committed to protecting your rights and examining every aspect of your case to find the holes in the prosecution’s charges against you. For a free and confidential consultation, you can call us at 480-413-1499. You can also send us an online message to have your questions answered.