Evading a Police Officer in Los Angeles, CA

Were you charged with evading a police officer?

The act of willfully or purposefully evading a police officer is a serious violation of California Vehicle Code 2800.1, which is considered a specific intent crime. If charged with this offense, prosecutors have to prove that you had the actual intent to elude or lose the police officer pursuing you. If they cannot prove it sufficiently, you cannot be convicted of the crime of evading a police officer under California law.

At Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners, our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys are ready to take on your case. We will ensure that every element that can be factored into disputing the charge is considered. Our firm focuses solely on the practice of criminal defense, and our 70 years of combined legal experience makes us uniquely suited to handle all types of criminal defense cases. Call now to set up a free consultation!

Understanding the Elements of the Crime

In order to secure a conviction for evading a police officer in California, the prosecution must be able to establish several different facts about the incident. For example, it must be established that the police vehicle in pursuit was distinctively marked or that the officer was in full uniform and that sirens were sounded as reasonably necessary. The officer's vehicle must exhibit at least one red light to indicate the demand to arrest. These factors can make a tremendous difference in the outcome of the case.

The Penalties for Evading a Police Officer in California

Under California Vehicle Code 2800.1, the crime of evading a police officer is generally prosecuted as a misdemeanor offense. If aggravating factors are present in the case, however, your charges could be elevated to felony reckless evading or evading an officer causing injury or death—which would result in much harsher penalties.

If convicted of misdemeanor evading, you could face:

  • Up to one year in county jail
  • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • 30-day vehicle impoundment

If an individual unknowingly evades arrest because of the effects of alcohol or drugs, or hearing or vision problems, charges for this particular crime will be dropped. You may then be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) or get your driver's license revoked if you do not fit the physical requirements for driving.

Charged with felony reckless evading?

Under California Vehicle Code 2800.2, you could be charged with felony reckless evading if you intentionally evade a police officer in a motor vehicle and, in doing so, drive with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others. If the latter cannot be proven, you would likely be charged with misdemeanor evading.

If convicted of felony reckless evading, you could face:

  • Up to three years in state prison
  • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • 30-day vehicle impoundment

If you were driving recklessly and were considered a public danger, you could be charged with CVC 2800.2. If evading a police officer while driving caused bodily injuries to others or wrongful death, you will be in violation of CVC 2800.3, and can be charged with vehicular manslaughter. In any case, you will need a skilled lawyer by your side.

Don't Wait to Contact Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners

Arrested for evading a peace officer? It is imperative you contact Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners immediately to diminish possible repercussions of such a charge and avoid penalties. We will strive to achieve the best possible outcome and fight for your rights. We have been representing criminally accused clients throughout Los Angeles County for more than seven decades combined, which means that we are well-equipped to provide the aggressive representation that you will need. Call now!

Contact a Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer at Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners if you were charged with evading a police officer.