In the last few discussions, we have talked about obstruction of a law
enforcement officer, specifically misdemeanor obstruction. O.C.G.A. §
16-10-24 (b) covers felony obstruction of a law enforcement officer. O.C.G.A.
§ 16-10-24 (b) provides in essence that whoever knowlingly and willfully
resists, obstructs, or opposes any law enforcement in the lawful discharge
of his official duties by offering or doing violence to the person of
such officer is guilty of a felony. A conviction for felony obstruction
of a law enforcement officer may be punished by imprisonment of as little
as one, or as much as five years.
An essential element of felony obstruction is that the officer is acting
in the lawful discharge of his or her duties. Additionally, the defendant
must have knowledge that the officer was acting in his or her official
character. Basically the defendant has to know that the person trying
to arrest them is acting as on duty law enforcement officer. The major
element that sets apart felony obstruction is the offering or doing violence facet.
Certain forms of speech can be constituted as offering to do violence.
Although mere disagreement or argument is generally not considered felony
obstruction, verbal threats will likely support an arrest for felony obstruction.
In addition to verbal threats, physical violence toward an officer, i.e.
pushing and shoving, can also support an arrest for felony obstruction
of a law enforcement officer. If you've been arrested, call the
Law Office of Robert L. Booker today. We will thoroughly review the facts of your case and provide you
with any defenses or mitigating factors you may have.