When stopped by the police, some people have an instinct to run away. It could be because they may have drugs and don't want to get caught in possession. It could be because they have a warrant, and don't want to go to jail. In some cases, it could just be a panicked response to dealing with the police, especially in light of the many recent deadly use of police forces incidents. Aside from the risk of getting caught, any attempt to flea may put the runner in danger, as they try and get away.
A young man in Oakland recently died after he attempted to flee from the police. The 23-year-old Oakland resident, Richard Linyard was pulled over by the police on Sunday. Linyard allegedly took off on foot, and ran into a nearby yard. The police called for backup, and waited for other officers to arrive before searching the neighborhood.
About 30 minutes later, the police searched the area and discovered Linyard wedged between two buildings, in a space only about 12 inches wide. Officers reportedly called for emergency responders, and performed CPR on Linyard while waiting for the paramedics to arrive. Linyard later died at a local hospital.
Linyard was a local musician who used the name “Afrikan Richie.” Police say he was wanted on a $10,000 warrant, but have not provided more details. A search of his car at the scene found about a pound of marijuana.
The strange circumstances surrounding his death have led some to question the official story, but according to the Oakland police, officers had no interaction with Linyard between the time he ran from his car, and when he was found lodged in the small space between the structures. Linyard's mother says she thinks the police choked her son to death.
According to Oakland Police spokesperson Officer Johnna Watson, “there was no active pursuit, no fight, no use of force. We were in the process of conducting a search when the officers located this individual.” The young man's death is still under investigation, but a preliminary investigation by the coroner indicates no use of force against Linyard.
Police chases, even on foot, can be dangerous for the suspect and law enforcement. A shoplifter in Rhode Island recently died at a shopping mall as she ran from store security. She was apparently unaware of the 25-foot drop as she jumped over a railing to get away.
On the other side of the chase, a police officer in Pennsylvania died while pursuing suspects. Three teenage robbery suspects took off running after they crashed a car. The young officer chasing them went over a fence, and fell 15 feet, dying of blunt force trauma to the head.
Running from the police is generally charged as resisting arrest under California Penal Code 148. Resisting, delaying or obstructing a law enforcement officer performing their duties is a misdemeanor, and can result in a fine of up to $1,000 and a year in jail.
If you were were caught trying to get away from the police, you may be facing a charge of resisting arrest, in addition to any other criminal charges. Just because you were arrested does not mean you have to be convicted. At the Gorelick Law Offices, attorney Lynn Gorelick has dedicated her legal career to defending people facing criminal charges in the East Bay. With more than 30 years of DUI and criminal defense experience, Lynn Gorelick understands what it means to fight for you. Contact the local East Bay criminal defense attorney who will stand up for your rights.