A man was taken into custody on allegations of obstruction when Georgia police officers mistook him for a different person. His criminal charges now include a violation of probation, which could potentially send him to jail for as long as seven years. However, some believe that the officers involved unfairly escalated the situation that led to the arrest.
Three officers were attempting to arrest a different man who had a warrant out for an alleged simple assault. When they arrived at the residence, the officers apparently assumed that the man seated inside of a car parked in the driveway was the same individual that they were looking for. When asked for his name he gave it, and even though it did not match the one attached to the warrant, officers continued to insist that he exit the vehicle. He was ultimately hit with a Taser gun and then handcuffed as he asked for officers to retrieve his wallet with his ID, which confirmed that he was not the man with the warrant.
Before being booked, he had to be taken to the hospital in order to have the Taser prongs removed from his back. The obstruction charge from this incident was also apparently the springboard for the charge for violating his first-time drug offender probation. Officers claimed that they arrested the man despite him not being the individual they were looking for because he was not cooperative despite bearing a striking resemblance to the person with the warrant. A neighbor disagreed that the men resembled each other.
Being accused of violating probation is no small matter, even for a first-time drug offender, and the consequences can have a profound impact on a person's life. Because of this, it is usually a good idea to begin planning possible defense strategies for criminal charges even as the investigation is ongoing. The first steps of this process often include a thorough review of all charges and any related evidence under the careful guidance of a Georgia defendant's respective counsel.
Source: New York Daily News, "Georgia man mistaken for suspect, hit with stun gun and arrested", Tobias Salinger, July 15, 2016