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What happens if you run from the police? 

Being stopped and questioned by the police is not a routine activity for most people. Perhaps you’ve never been stopped by the police before.

It goes without saying that it can be difficult to know what to do in this situation. For some, the natural reaction is to panic. Others may be more likely to remain calm and composed. 

The natural reaction for many is to run, which is a bad idea. What can happen if you run from law enforcement in South Dakota?

You may face charges of resisting arrest 

If a law enforcement officer approaches you or asks you to stop where you are, they likely have a reason for doing so. They may be mistaken in believing that you have committed an offense, but if they have probable cause then they are entitled to arrest and detain you. 

If you run, then you may face resisting arrest charges, which are a class 1 misdemeanor in South Dakota. Even if it is later discovered that the police were mistaken in their initial suspicions, resisting is a completely separate charge and it could still hold up if you ran. 

Failing to stop when driving

If law enforcement holds a reasonable suspicion that you may have committed a driving offense, they are entitled to pull you over. Generally, this is done by using hand gestures, sirens and emergency lights. 

Even if you know that you haven’t committed an infraction, you must still obey the orders of officers to pull over. Failure to do so could result in a charge of eluding law enforcement, which is a Class 1 misdemeanor in South Dakota. 

Running from the police never helps a situation. Just because you don’t run doesn’t mean that you cannot assert your constitutional rights to remain silent and not consent to unlawful searches and seizures.

If you’re facing criminal charges, seeking legal guidance is the best way to protect your future.