False Information To A Law Enforcement Officer?


Local police officers obtaining information

Local police officers obtaining information during a traffic stop.

Receiving a charge of providing false information to a law enforcement officer is a serious offense. It is a misdemeanor and carries a fine of up to $5,000.00 and a maximum jail sentence of one year in the county the crime was allegedly committed. If you were charged with this crime, you need to retain a lawyer immediately.

People charged with false information to a law enforcement officer usually do not intend to give the officer false information. Rather it arises when someone does not remember their full social security number and gives the wrong digits. The statute, however, speaks to all identifying information and is not limited to the social security number.

If it is difficult for you to remember your social security number, you may consider having it visible on your Mississippi driver’s license. However, this could lead to identity theft risk and should be carefully considered.

Defenses:
  • Intent is the key here. The government bears the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt you intended to mislead the officer.
  • The misleading information must be looked at together with all of the other information you provided the officer.
  • Did the officer make a mistake in taking down the information you provided? If so, then you likely did not violate the statute.
  • Was it done in the course of the officer’s duties? An off-duty officer requesting this information from you is possibly not acting in the course of his duties.

As you can see, a defense for someone charged with false information to a law enforcement officer may become very technical. In the past, The Franks Law Firm, PLLC assisted people charged with this crime before and will do it again. Therefore, contact The Franks Law Firm, PLLC at (601) 283-2343 to schedule your initial consultation for $20.00.

Mississippi Code Annotated § 97-9-79.

By: Attorney Joey Franks