Fleeing or Eluding Police

When a police officer in Pennsylvania activates his or her flashing lights as a signal for a motorist to pull over, drivers are obligated to comply. Failure to do so can result in a person being charged with attempting to elude or flee law enforcement.

Not every one of these cases involves people simply trying to avoid law enforcement though. It may be possible that a driver did not see the lights, the squad car was not clearly marked, or the motorist had some sort of personal emergency that superseded stopping for police.

Philadelphia Fleeing or Eluding Police Lawyer

Have you been charged with attempting to elude or flee police in Pennsylvania? You will want to make sure that you are represented by a skilled and hard-working criminal defense attorney.

Joseph Lento of Lento Law Firm aggressively defends clients all over Philadelphia County and nearby communities in Pennsylvania against these criminal charges. He can review your case during a free, confidential consultation when you call (215) 535-5353.

Overview of Fleeing or Eluding Police in Philadelphia County

Pennsylvania Fleeing or Eluding Police Charges

Under Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 75 § 3733, this offense is defined as any driver who willfully fails or refuses to bring his vehicle to a stop or otherwise flees or attempts to elude a pursuing police officer when given a visual and audible signal to bring the vehicle to a stop. The signal given by the police officer may be by hand, voice, emergency lights, or siren.

This crime is classified as a second-degree misdemeanor. However, charges may be elevated to a third-degree felony if the alleged offense involved any of the following:

  • Alleged offender was driving under influence (DUI) of alcohol or controlled substance
  • Alleged offender crossed a state line during the chase
  • Alleged offender endangered a law enforcement officer or member of the general public by engaging in a high-speed chase

Penalties for Fleeing or Eluding Police in Philadelphia

A conviction for this crime can have an extremely serious impact on an alleged offender's life. Depending on the specific classification of this offense for which you have been charged, the possible punishments may include:

  • Second-Degree Misdemeanor — Up to two years in prison, up to $5,000 in fines, and 12 month suspension of driver's license
  • Third-Degree Felony — Up to seven years in prison, up to $15,000 in fines, and 12 month suspension of driver's license

Pennsylvania Fleeing or Eluding Police Defenses

Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes Title 75 § 3733(c) provides two acceptable affirmative defenses in which an alleged offender can legally justify his or her commission of the alleged crime. The defenses accepted under this statute include:

  • Police Signal Issues — This defense may be utilized if the police officer's vehicle was not clearly identifiable by its markings or if an unmarked vehicle was not occupied by a police officer in uniform and displaying a badge or other sign of authority.
  • Personal Emergency — An alleged offender may be able to excuse his or her failure to immediately stop for a police officer if the decision was “based upon a good faith concern for personal safety.”

A person who has been accused of this crime can also deny that he or she committed the crime by challenging the prosecutor's claims through such defenses as:

  • Alleged offender was not attempting to elude or flee
  • Equipment failure prevented immediate stop
  • Mistaken identity
  • No criminal intent
  • Police officer was not attempting to perform a lawful stop

Find the Best Fleeing or Eluding Police Lawyer in Philadelphia

If you were arrested for allegedly eluding or fleeing law enforcement in Pennsylvania, do not delay in seeking the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Joseph Lento fights to protect the rights of people who have been accused of traffic offenses in the Keystone State.

Lento Law Firm represents people throughout Philadelphia County as well as many surrounding areas of Pennsylvania. Let our firm provide a complete evaluation of your case by calling (215) 535-5353 today to set up a free legal consultation.

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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has nearly a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania and New Jersey attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations – the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, or New Jersey should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.

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