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Bartow County Felony Obstruction: Directed Verdict of “Not Guilty”

Our client, a farm hand on a local Bartow County farm, was approached by a law enforcement officer who, based on a tip from the owner of the farm, demanded that he produce identification to prove that he did not have an outstanding warrant for his arrest for Failure to Appear on a drug possession charge.  Our client refused to produce identification because he did not believe that the police had the right to require him to produce identification under the circumstances.  The law enforcement officer attempted to arrest the client, and the client picked the officer up and slammed him to the ground, breaking his leg.  The client was charged with Felony Obstruction, and we took the case to a jury trial.  We defended the case on the theory that the officer lacked Reasonable Articulable Suspicion that the client was engaged in criminal activity, and thus, the officer’s demand that the client produce identification was unlawful. The case never made it to the jury. At the conclusion of the State’s case, the trial judge granted our Motion for Directed Verdict of Not-Guilty.

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