I received a letter from the court that a criminal complaint has been filed against me for resting a peace officer PC 148. Can a discussion with no physical contact constitute resitance? I told him that "I thought the ticket was a joke"?
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): California
Hello mwb32ewe and welcome to JustAnswer.
Please be aware that answers on this site are to be used for general information purposes only, not as a substitute for in-person evaluation or specific legal advice. JA Legal Experts will provide only general information about the law, and will not apply their legal knowledge or skills to resolve or advise on the customer's specific factual circumstances described in the question, such as by proposing a specific course of action. By answering questions, experts do not form attorney-client relationships with users of the site. The laws, regulations, other governing authorities, standards, practices and procedures that apply to your particular question may differ depending on your location and information typically discovered through in-person evaluations or visits. No attorney-client relationships shall be formed on the site, experts are prohibited from having off-site contact with customers and experts may not represent customers in their cases. Communications on this site are not confidential and shall not be the subject of any associated privileges, so post with discretion. Communications on this site are limited, do not involve in-person evaluations or visits, and do not include safeguards and procedures typical of in-person evaluations and visits. For specific legal advice, consult with an attorney licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction.
There is much more to the story (see write up below) But excpet for telling the officers that the ticket for rolling through a stop sign was a joke I cannot come up with any resistance. After I told the officer that I would file a complaint he strated pulling me off the bike at which point I was stunned and follwed every direction they pushed me in for no apperent reason. So that connot be it.
Here is a write up on the incident:
On March 21st I bicycled together with my wife Dagmar Cueppers to work. This is a 12 mile ride from El Cerrito, where I live, to West Oakland. I have been commuting this way to work for the last 10 years. I am a Director in one of the largest costcrution companies on teh West Coast in teh Bay Area, a Licenesed Professional Engineer.
On the 21st on Mandela Parkway and 32nd street we saw a CHP car parked diagonally across the bicycle path just behind the intersection and we slowed down to approximately 4 mph steadily looking at the CHP car as it was not apparent what the situation was at the scene. We were concerned that we should not get too close to the scene. We slowly rolled through the intersection without completely stopping at the stop sign.
One of the officers then appeared from behind the vehicle and waved us towards him. We stopped behind his car and he asked us if we knew there was a stop sign. He asked for our drivers licenses. My wife didn't have hers with her and for a moment I thought I had forgotten mine as well. I mentioned that possibility to the officer but then remembered it could be in my back pack. I took my back pack off my back and put it in front of me on my handlebars opening my pack wide and while being observed by the officer was delighted to see my wallet. I handed my drivers license to the chp officer and after looking up my wife's information he started to write a ticket.
I said: you are not writing us a ticket are you? The officer responded I sure am. I will not let anybody go through his stop sign. I responded: "That is a f**king joke, we slowed down to almost a stop" (Please excuse the language but that is what I said) Then I explained: Do you know what happened to me right here in this area of Mandela Parkway when I stopped two years ago? Two men walked up to me and put a gun to my head and robbed my bike and back pack. Both officers now looked at me and one officer responded: "You should not be bicycling anyways." I said: you know what that's enough I am going to file a complaint against you. You are not providing a service to the public you are harassing bicyclists.
At this moment one of them walked back to me from his car got with his face as close as within an inch of my face while I was still sitting on my bicycle with my back pack on my handlebar and started yelling at me loudly. I could see his blood pounding in his head. Then he started pulling on my bike jersey without any verbal command what he wanted me to do. I said don't touch me and pulled back my arm. He said step off your bike and kept pulling on my jersey. I followed his request and tried to step off the bike when he pulled my back pack out of my hand while still pulling with the other hand on my jersey and threw my back pack against the wall behind him. I said : Hey there is an Ipad in there. He said, well there could be a gun in there. He kept pulling my arm and now the other officer took my left hand with that I was still holding my bike trying to carefully put it down as it is a brand new $5,000 bike. I was unable to lay the bike down carefully but had to let it fall on the ground. One officer pulled my right arm onto my back and up and the other twisted my left arm and wrist pulling it down. They pushed me with that motion to the ground. The pushing was light and almost seemed hesitant. When I was on the ground with my arms on my back the officer on my right side got more aggressive and abusive. The officer that was holding my right arm pushed me further down by pulling my hand hard back up behind my back while the other officer still had my arm twisted and pulled down. My back got twisted and I felt a strong pain in my back. Now the officer told me to get back up. When I tried I felt numbness in my right leg and a terrible pain in my back. I told the officer I can't get back up. They asked why and I responded back that my back was out. I was scared as I had a back injury a year ago and was affright it was now aggravated. I felt abused and helpless. (The entire scene described in this paragraph took maybe 20 seconds)
My wife was terrified and came to help me trying to ease my pain by stretching my leg but it did not help. The officers called an ambulance and it arrived together with a fire truck and the Oakland police as well as a supervisor. The EMT offered to help me onto the stretcher but any movement caused terrible pain. I finally got into the ambulance and was offered pain medication. I thought I could do without but shortly after changed my mind as the pain got worse. The EMT gave me morphine. The police officers kept running around the ambulance and repeatedly opened the door without any specific questions or instructions. The supervisor asked me what happened and I gave him a short statement. The EMT started to complain that she had never seen officers running behind an ambulance. She kept asking what they want and if they could make up their minds. She said they must be officers in training and that she could not believe what was happening. In the ER I was diagnosed with a lumbar sprain and contusion. The ER doctor was unable to get any reflexes in my right foot. I was prescribed Vicodin, muscle relaxants and anti inflammatories. I was also advised to see a specialist soon. The police did not show up in the hospital. The following week I saw a specialist and the diagnosis was confirmed. I received more Vicodin, muscle relaxants and anti inflammatories. I was advised not to bike for more than two hours for a while and go to physiotherapy for 6 weeks twice a week. I have to cancel my participation in Ironman St George in May that I had registered for more than a year ago.
The biggest surprise in your situation is that these were CHP officers -- they are generally more professional than what you have described.You are obviously an experienced bicyclist, so I'm sure you know that technically you are required to come to a complete stop at stop signs, the same as when driving a motor vehicle. And, the fact that you had a prior incident in which you were robbed when stopped does not relieve you of that obligation (particularly with police officers right there on this occasion).That said, however, this sounds like a wildly over-reactive response on the part of the officers. What you did -- sometimes referred to as "contempt of cop" -- was probably not the best plan (rather than telling these officers what you planned to do, you should have just signed the ticket and then filed your complaint), but did not warrant the response you got from these guys.Now, what may well be happening is that they submitted the case to the DA's office and the latter filed a complaint in an effort to avert possible civil liability for the injuries that you suffered.You should consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney, as well as an experienced personal injury lawyer, to be sure that you are properly advised how to handle both the criminal and civil aspects of this situation.Good luck with this and thanks again for asking your question here on JustAnswer.
CA Atty since 1976, primarily criminal law. 150+ jury trials.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).