Bullhead City, AZ asked in Criminal Law for Arizona

Q: Why was i charged w hindering in 2 degree ? Police came on a welfare check, but refused to leave.

I answered door to two police officers that stated they were there on a welfare check called in by a friend. I told them we are all sleeping and that everything is fine. They asked to talk to my son , I woke him up and we both talked through a see through locked screen. they could see we were fine. they insisted we open screen so we could talk better , told them we are fine and they could talk just fine. still they refused to leave. after about ten minutes of them saying open door open door, i told them to leave my property two times , they did not. My son half asleep got angry and so did I , said if this is about my misdemeanor warrant , Im taking care of it right after Christmas, which was in five days. Then announced they were there for his warrant. They were there for well check, They said that because we refused to open door and were butthurt. They showed no paperwork in hand hand and I told them to leave. My son closed door as they said , fine I will arrest homeowner for hinder

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1 Lawyer Answer
Zachary Divelbiss
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  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Licensed in Arizona

A: Hindering in the 2nd degree comes from ARS 13-2511. The law is fairly simple as it says, "A person commits hindering prosecution in the second degree if, with the intent to hinder the apprehension, prosecution, conviction or punishment of another for any misdemeanor or petty offense, such person renders assistance to such as person."

There are a few common issue people have here. First is that you didn't really do anything in relation to "hindering prosecution". However, prosecution can basically start at the investigation phase, which is basically what happened in your situation.

Secondly, based on what you said, there isn't much that you did to "render assistance". But that is part of the problem with this law as it was specifically very broadly written to catch people for all kind of situations. Based on what you said happened, it seems like you should hire a local law firm and see if they can try to get your case dismissed. Either way, the police are going to say they had probable cause for a violation of this statute and technically they are correct since it is really such a broadly written law.

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