California Penal Code section 148. (a) (1) says in relevant part that every person who willfully resists, delays, or obstructs any public officer, peace officer, or an emergency medical technician, in the discharge or attempt to discharge any duty of his or her office or employment, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment. Technically speaking, by resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer from his or her duties, one can be charged with a misdemeanor.
Most Misdemeanor charges carry punishment of up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine and PC 148(a)(1) is no different. In addition, a conviction for a misdemeanor for this type of charge can create larger problems for you on applications for future employment. If you are being charged with what is commonly known as obstruction, you should engage a private attorney like myself to fight your case. A dismissal is always coveted on these types of cases, but an infraction conviction or a conviction to a more benign misdemeanor would always be preferred over the alternative.
In my most recent case involving a charge of PC148(a)(1), I convinced the prosecutor to reduce the charge to a traffic ticket for disturbing the peace (PC415- essentially a ticket for playing loud music at a party). If you have been charged with obstruction or any other misdemeanor or felony, contact Matthew J. Cohen, Esq. at 818.294.1922 for a consultation immediately.