Protester Rights and the Bail Process

On April 12, 2015, a man by the name of Freddie Gray was chased down and arrested for “possession of a switchblade” by Baltimore PD.  Eyewitnesses report Gray screaming and asking for medical attention.  By April 19, a week later, Gray had slipped into a coma and died while in police custody.  Autopsy reports indicate that Gray’s neck was broken and his spinal cord was nearly severed.  His death set off yet another wave of daily protests decrying police racism and brutality in west Baltimore that boiled over into riots throughout the last week of April.  By April 27, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan declared a state of emergency and even imposed a 10pm curfew.

Meanwhile, a wave of national protests sprung up in support of Baltimore, including San Diego.  In San Diego, hundreds marched once again in the neighborhood of City Heights, known in the area for being one of the historically poorest neighborhoods in this tourist town, as well as downtown San Diego.  The City Heights area has also held a number of “BlackLivesMatter” protests in the past several months following the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.  While many of these protests have not led to any arrests, that has not always been the case.  Meanwhile, in Baltimore, there are reports of frightening instances of medical volunteers and legal observers being arrested without charges.  In addition, a video of a Freddie Gray protester being pepper sprayed and slammed to the ground has also made its rounds to the internet.

What Can I be Charged/Arrested For?

As shown by the current events this past year, anyone who is engaging in civil disobedience, runs the risk of arrest and charges, including for:

  • Resisting arrest or delaying a peace officer (Penal Code Section 148)
  • Disrupting a public meeting (Penal Code Section 403)
  • Riot and unlawful assembly (Penal Code Sections 404-408)
  • Failure to disperse (Penal Code Sections 409)
  • Trespassing (Penal Code Section 602)
  • Refusing to obey a peace officer who is enforcing the Vehicle Code (Vehicle Code Section 2800(a))
  • Attempting to free a person who has just been arrested (Penal Code Section 405a)
  • Using force, a threat of force, or physical obstruction to interfere with a person’s right to reproductive health services or to attend a place of religious worship (18.U.S.C. §248)

Your Rights Once Arrested

Every American has a 1st Amendment constitutional right to participate in peaceful demonstrations. If arrested, the 4th Amendment demands that you are notified as to the reason why (your charges).  Typically, when arrested, those who are being detained must be able to see a bail commissioner within 24 hours to either be given the chance to post bail, or be released out of one’s own recognizance.  Additionally, you are not supposed to be denied food, water, or medical attention (ie. insulin shots) while in police custody.

San Diego Bail Process and Criminal Defense Lawyer

The Law Offices of David M. Boertje handles all misdemeanor and felony criminal cases including charges of evading a police officer and charges of ‘impeding’ a police officer’s activities.  We are dedicated to protecting your constitutional rights and freedom, and have successfully represented many defendants, including those with criminal charges for resisting arrest, evading a police officer, or ‘impeding a police officer’s activities.’  If you have been arrested and charged with a crime, reach out to attorney David Boertje today to discuss your case.