Santa Clarita Evading Arrest Defense Attorney
Call Attorney Matthew Ruff Direct at 661-327-7833
Looking for an evading arrest attorney in Santa Clarita California? Matthew has over 25 years
experience in criminal defense in Los Angeles County. If you or someone you know has been
arrested in Santa Clarita California for evading arrest you need a qualified local criminal defense
attorney for your defense. California law provides for stiff penalties if you are convicted and
the DMV will likely suspend your driver's license. An attorney can find legal defenses that he
can use to get the charges dropped, reduced or have the punishment minimized.
A local Santa Clarita Criminal Defense Attorney can, in most cases, go to Court on your behalf
and negotiate a favorable resolution which can involve an outright dismissal, reduction to a lesser
offense or a probation disposition to avoid jail. The crime of evading arrest is a felony,
however, California law may allow for the case to be reduced to a misdemeanor. A Lawyer can
help by meeting with the District Attorney before the case goes to Court and presenting
mitigating evidence, and background information about the person arrested.
Recently, our attorney was able to convince a prosecutor to dismiss the charge of evading arrest
and allow our client to plead to a reduced infraction of running a stop sign and speeding. This
disposition allowed our client to save her drivers license and keep her driving record clean of a
very serious offense.
There are many defenses to the crime of evasion from arrest. In fact, in some cases there may
be a perfectly legitimate explanation why a driver may not stop when a police officer is trying to
affect a traffic stop. In certain instances a driver may reasonably feel unsafe to pull over on a
section of a highway and this could give rise to a challenge in the case. In other situations a
driver may not know the officer is trying to pull them over.
The law for evasion of arrest is codified in the California Vehicle Code as follows:
§ 2800.1. Flight from peace officer
(a) Any person who, while operating a motor vehicle and with the intent to evade, willfully flees
or otherwise attempts to elude a pursuing peace officer's motor vehicle, is guilty of a
misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year if all of
the following conditions exist:
(1) The peace officer's motor vehicle is exhibiting at least one lighted red lamp visible from the
front and the person either sees or reasonably should have seen the lamp.
(2) The peace officer's motor vehicle is sounding a siren as may be reasonably necessary.
(3) The peace officer's motor vehicle is distinctively marked.
(4) The peace officer's motor vehicle is operated by a peace officer, as defined in Chapter 4.5
(commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2 of the Penal Code, and that peace officer is
wearing a distinctive uniform.
(b) Any person who, while operating a motor vehicle and with the intent to evade, willfully flees
or otherwise attempts to elude a pursuing peace officer's bicycle, is guilty of a misdemeanor
punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year if the following
(1) The peace officer's bicycle is distinctively marked.
(2) The peace officer's bicycle is operated by a peace officer, as defined in paragraph (4) of
subdivision (a), and that peace officer is wearing a distinctive uniform.
(3) The peace officer gives a verbal command to stop.
(4) The peace officer sounds a horn that produces a sound of at least 115 decibels.
(5) The peace officer gives a hand signal commanding the person to stop.
(6) The person is aware or reasonably should have been aware of the verbal command, horn,
and hand signal, but refuses to comply with the command to stop.
VC 2800.1 is a misdemeanor offense and carries with it, in addition to jail time, the mandatory
suspension of a person's driving privilege for up to one year. The Santa Clarita Court treats
these offenses very seriously. If the prosecutor alleges that the evading was done in a "willful
and wanton" disregard for the safety of others then they can file the case as a felony. New
changes in California Law now allow the District Attorney to charge a felony if the evading
involves driving in the opposite lane of travel (Vehicle Code section 2800.4), regardless of
whether the conduct rises to the level of reckless driving.
If you are facing charges for evasion of arrest you need an aggressive criminal attorney on your
side. If your case involves a driving under the influence our Santa Clarita DUI Lawyers are well
versed in that area of the law as well. Contact the local Santa Clarita Valley Criminal Defense
Team for information and options available to you at (661) 327-7833.