In New Jersey, Obstruction of Justice charges may be either a felony or a misdemeanor.
Sorry, there’s no simple answer.
It all depends on the facts of your case.
If you are charged with Fourth Degree Obstruction of Justice, then you have been charged with a Felony.
This usually means that you really got in the way of cop doing his/her job.
In New Jersey, a Felony is called an “Indictable Offense”.
Whenever you prevent or try to prevent a law enforcement officer from doing his job, you’re in big trouble.
On the other hand, if the Obstruction charge was added to other charges like DUI or Simple Assault, you will most likely get charged with a misdemeanor.
Rest assured, for the most part, Obstruction of Justice charges in NJ are misdemeanors.
Is it obstruction of justice to Interfere With the Police?
Le’ts think about it…
Cops have very dangerous jobs. They risk their life every day.
Besides chasing bad guys, cops have to make innocent people stay safe.
If you get in their way, you make their job harder.
Besides that, you also put other people’s safety at risk.
It’s in everyone’s best interest that you let the police do their job.
What Does obstruction of justice Mean?
Obstruction means “to get in the way”.
Have you ever tried to see a movie screen but the person in front of you is too tall?
Well, that person is “obstructing your view” or “getting in your way”.
In the same way, when a cop is trying to do their job and you get in their way,
you are committing the crime of “police obstruction”.
Can I get arrested for Obstruction of justice without violence?
The Obstruction of Justice charges in New Jersey are very clear.
You do not have to do something violent to interfere with the cops.
To be charged with this crime, sometimes all you need to do is refuse a direct police order.
However, if you refuse the police entry into your house because they do not have a warrant,
you should be okay.
You cannot be charged with a crime when you exercise your Constitutional rights.
If you have one of these situations, call us.
Things can get really complicated and you can face up to 18 months in jail and huge fines.
To learn how crimes are graded in NJ, read this:
How Are Crimes Graded In New Jersey?
So, is obstruction of justice a felony or misdemeanor?
If you are confused, don’t feel bad.
You are not the only one.
Most of our clients don’t have a clue about why they were charged.
An important part of our job is to investigate your case and find out why you got charged.
If you were charged with a felony, we use different strategies to get the charges lowered to a misdeamenor.
Even better, we try to get the entire charge dismissed.
It’s not easy and it takes time.
Most importantly, once we learn all of the facts, we can prepare your best defense.