Public officers are vested with many duties to provide service to their constituents. Often, public officers require some degree of cooperation from others in order to be able to do their jobs correctly. Public officers may need to collect data or obtain statements, and they may need to interact with the public in other ways while carrying out their official tasks.
In certain cases, public officers will be stymied in their efforts by the actions of others. When a person obstructs a public officer from performing his or her official duties, this obstruction can actually rise to the level of a criminal act. The person who obstructs could be prosecuted and charged with a serious crime that sometimes results in incarceration and other penalties, such as a substantial fine.
If you find yourself facing charges for obstruction of a public officer, it is imperative that you get legal help from a compassionate and knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer in Las Vegas. There are defenses that can be raised when you are charged, but you need to develop the right legal strategy to reduce the likelihood of a conviction or to limit the penalties that you face. LV Criminal Defense is here to help you fight the accusations of obstructing a public officer, so give us a call as soon as possible when you are charged.
Nick Wooldridge has a long track record of representing clients accused of serious federal and state crimes in Nevada.
Nevada defines the crime of obstructing a public officer in Nevada Revised Statute section 197.190. The relevant statute explains several different behaviors that could be considered unlawful obstruction.
One example of unlawful obstruction under N.R.S. 197.190 involves refusing or neglecting to make a statement, to produce a report, or to provide information which a public officer lawfully requires. Due notice must be given first before a refusal to issue a statement or provide information to a public officer crosses into obstruction. For example, if required to provide a report and notified that the report is made necessary for a public officer to do his job, you could be charged with obstruction of public officers if you refused to provide the report.
Under N.R.S. 197.190, it is also considered obstruction of a public officer to make a willfully misleading, untrue or exaggerated statement in a report, statement, or information that is provided to a public officer.
Finally, it is unlawful under N.R.S. 197.190 to obstruct a public officer in any way in connection with the discharge of official powers or duties. For general obstruction, you will generally be charged under N.R.S. 197.190 only if your behavior does not fall under another type of prohibited conduct under Chapter 197 of Nevada’s code.
If you are found guilty of violating N.R.S. 197.190, you will be convicted of a misdemeanor charge. While a misdemeanor is the least serious of the criminal offenses you could be charged with in Nevada, there is still the potential for fines and jail time upon conviction.
A Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer at LV Criminal Defense can provide you with legal representation if you have been accused of obstructing a public officer. We have represented many defendants accused of this offense and we can work with you to evaluate the strength of the evidence against you and to make a determination on the best course of action for reducing the chances of conviction or reducing the penalties that you could face. To find out more about how a criminal defense lawyer in Nevada can help you to fight serious charges, give us a call today.