A 62-year-old man from Canadensis is facing charges after he allegedly held a woman in his car against her will. According to Pennsylvania State police, on the morning of December 3, the man was driving a 60-year-old woman around continuously in Green Township, refusing to drive the woman home. When the driver stopped at a bank, the woman, a resident of Greentown, was able to escape the vehicle. The man allegedly tried to force and coerce the woman back into the vehicle. According to police, a witness intervened and brought the woman to a location nearby. Pennsylvania State police say that charges will be filed for False Imprisonment. The LLF Law Firm Criminal Defense Team can help if you have been charged with false imprisonment or a domestic violence charge. Call us today at 888.535.3686 or contact us online.
Understanding a Charge of False Imprisonment in Pennsylvania
False imprisonment is the intentional and unlawful act of restricting someone else's freedom of movement. It differs from kidnapping. In Pennsylvania, false imprisonment of an adult is considered a misdemeanor of the second degree, which may result in two years of imprisonment and a fine of $5,000. When the victim is a minor, false imprisonment is a felony of the second degree, even if the individual accused is a parent, and the penalty may include up to 10 years in prison and a $25,000 fine.
The term “false imprisonment” may evoke images of someone being dragged against their will, but there are other examples of false imprisonment which include:
- Locking someone in a room without their consent
- Physically preventing someone from leaving an area
- Taking hold of someone without their permission and holding them so they are unable to leave
- A store owner or security guard detaining someone without justification for an unreasonable length of time
- Employer detaining an employee for suspected theft for an unreasonable length of time
- A robber entering a store yielding a gun, instructing people not to leave
Defending a Charge of False Imprisonment
Central to a claim of false imprisonment is whether the person claiming imprisonment gave consent, either actual or implied. When the individual charged with confining the other person had reasonable grounds to justify the imprisonment, consent is not required. In some cases, a charge of false imprisonment can quickly lead to issuing a Protection from Abuse order.
A strong defense against false imprisonment charges may include proving that consent was obtained without coercion. It is not uncommon for an individual who consents to confinement to later claim false imprisonment. A strong defense may also explore whether the individual charged with false imprisonment had reasonable grounds for detaining the individual.
If you have been arrested on a charge related to false imprisonment or kidnapping, contact the LLF Law Firm as soon as possible. The LLF Law Firm Criminal Defense Team has extensive experience and is dedicated to fighting on your behalf. Call us today at 888.535.3686 or contact us online.