In Arizona, it is illegal to provide false information to a police officer. Under Arizona law, it is unlawful for a person to knowingly make to a law enforcement agency of either this state or a political subdivision of this state a false, fraudulent or unfounded report or statement or to knowingly misrepresent a fact for the purpose of interfering with the orderly operation of a law enforcement agency or misleading a police officer.
In many cases, individuals are charged with False Reporting when a person provides a police officer with a false name. An example of this is when an individual with a fake ID presents false information to a police officer claiming to be the individual on the ID. Individuals in a domestic violence case can also open themselves to False Reporting. During heated arguments, parties may get caught up in the moment and tell an officer embellished information. After the argument has calmed down, parties may change their original story. This situation can lead a prosecutor to file False Reporting charges against the individual who made the statement.
False Reporting is considered a class one misdemeanor. A class one misdemeanor carries the stiffest punishment of all misdemeanor crimes. A class one misdemeanor ranges from probation with no jail time to a maximum sentence of six months in jail. Generally, there are fines associated with a class one misdemeanor. The maximum fine is $2,500 which also carries an 84% surcharge the defendant must pay.
There are defenses an individual can present while disputing a false reporting claim. The key elements that can be disputed in a false reporting case is whether the defendant had the “intent” and “knowledge” to provide a law enforcement official with false information. This is why it is crucial to have an attorney begin focusing on defenses as soon as possible.
Facing a charge of False Reporting can lead to firm repercussions. If convicted, the crime of False Reporting can be used against you in a future lawsuit or a child custody proceeding. Mr. Lopez is an experienced criminal defense attorney who has represented people throughout Arizona charged with false reporting. We have found that a False Reporting charge is often the result of a misunderstanding by a police officer.
Mr. Lopez is an experienced criminal defense attorney who has represented people throughout Arizona, facing criminal charges. If charged with False Reporting, it is critical to hire an attorney as soon as possible so they may begin investigating your case and craft an effective defense. Speak to an attorney at our firm to see what our approach is going to be to provide you with a not guilty verdict.