If Charged With False Personation, You Might Be In Luck.
Video Transcribed: Have you been charged with false personation? Well, you might be in luck because it probably should have been charged as misdemeanor obstruction, rather than that felony. My name is Ryan Cannonie, I am the Tahlequah family attorney for Wirth Law Office in Tahlequah. And when I was a prosecutor, a defense attorney brought up this case to me. Now it’s an unpublished case.
Unpublished cases mean it’s not considered as binding on a court as a published case, but it is very persuasive to show what the court of criminal appeals would do in a similar circumstance.
So when you look at false personation cases, that’s usually, in Oklahoma it’s defined as either you’re making someone else liable for something, or you’re gaining a benefit. There are some cases that have led up to this, that escaping arrest or detention is a benefit. That was a blurb in one of the cases.
And so a lot of prosecutors like to charge false personation as a felony, even just when it should be obstruction. When it’s lying about your name, something like that, where officers figured out, “Wait no, we know you’re Ryan Cannonie, even though you told us you’re Ryan Smith.”
Well, this person still goes to jail. There are some other cases out there that talk about if officers figure it out, if you can’t actually get the benefit of escaping arrest, then it probably should be obstruction.
Now, this all is very fact-specific, so don’t go running out there and saying, “Haha, mine should be obstruction.” It really depends on the specific facts of your case. And how closely they line up to some of these other unpublished cases. But if you find yourself in this situation, if you have been charged as a felony false personation, and you think, well, you got arrested on it, give us a call.
We might be able to help, may be able to see if we can get it knocked down to a misdemeanor obstruction for you, or look through the evidence and see if it should have been charged in the first place.
Or if you’re Native American going on my McGirt kick, because pretty much every video we make now, has something to do with McGirt, Maybe it shouldn’t have been charged in the first place. But there’s a lot going on with criminal justice in Oklahoma right now, between McGirt, between the state question 805, with sentence enhancements.
And so if you are charged with one of these felonies, it really does benefit you to call an attorney to see if you really deserve to have that on your record. Once you plead to it, it’s hard to get that off of your record, and maybe right now that sounds like a good idea, but in 10 years, maybe you’ll be regretting your decision. So give us a call, we’ll talk to you, we do free consultations. Go to Tahlequahattorney.com, send us a web form, we’ll see if we can help. Thanks.