The one thing everyone is told when growing up is to always cooperate with police no matter what. According to a recently passed law in Indianapolis Marion County Sheriff’s office, citizens have the right to resist from any officer making an illegal search or arrest. The law states that if an officer tries to make an arrest with a faulty warrant or insufficient evidence, that the citizen may resist the unlawful arrest to the point of taking an arresting officer’s life if necessary. The circumstances of this law are very rare but if they do happen and the citizen kills the officer, the citizen might only be charged with manslaughter or the facts might show that no offense has been committed.
Here is a news cast report on the new law.
Because this law is so new and goes against tradition to tell citizens to resist arrest, officers in Marion County are on edge. Officers fear that when citizens read this new law they are going to only focus of the right to resist and not read the fine print of when a citizen can resist. This can cause more problems and potential dangers to officers on the street trying to do their job the legal and right way. You can see this danger in instances where police are told to search homes with valid warrants. Officers who serve warrants are now told to wear their uniforms instead of plain street clothes. This may seem like a harmless request, but it can put those officers at a greater risk of being assaulted. Serving warrants in uniform gives a criminal a heads up the police are here and can allow them to prepare themselves in an armed combat.
Though this law is relatively new and no harm has yet come to an officer because of it. It has changed more officers’ mindsets on how to approach old situations in a new way that will insure their safety and the safety of the citizens. Officers, who woke up and had a fear of being injured or assaulted on the job, are now more on edge when approaching suspects. Though this law is set in place to protect citizens from crooked officers, may be causing more harm than good in the run.
The Indy channel.com. Right To Resist Law Changes Ind. Deputies Uniforms. Officer.com. 04/02/2012. http://www.officer.com/news/10686474/right-to-resist-law-changes-ind-deputies-uniforms