Johnston Man Arrested After Police Chase

As reported by Donita Naylor in the March 14, 2013 edition of the Providence Journal, a Johnston man has been arrested following a police chase which ended in a car crash. Police tried to serve the man on an outstanding warrant for a case involving charges of assault, disorderly conduct and second degree child abuse. The man crashed his car as he tried to flee from police. He is now facing additional charges of being a bail violator and eluding police.

Pursuant to Rhode Island General Laws 31-27-4.1, eluding police is defined as any person who in an attempt to elude or flee from a police officer in an emergency police vehicle in a high speed pursuit of the person, operates a motor vehicle at speeds greater than fifteen (15) miles per hour over the speed limit, or who causes property damage only in excess of one thousand dollars ($1,000).

The penalties if convicted include up to one year incarceration at the adult correction institutions (A.C.I.) and a fine of five hundred dollars ($500) but not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000). License suspension of not less than ninety (90) days but not more than six (6) months and forfeiture of the motor vehicle.

The most serious charge the man is facing is second degree child abuse, which is a felony. Pursuant to R.I.G.L. 11-9-5.3, child abuse is defined as whenever a person having care of a child, as defined by § 40-11-2(2), whether assumed voluntarily or because of a legal obligation, including any instance where a child has been placed by his or her parents, caretaker, or licensed or governmental child placement agency for care or treatment, knowingly or intentionally:

(1) Inflicts upon a child serious bodily injury, shall be guilty of first degree child abuse.

(2) Inflicts upon a child any other physical injury, shall be guilty of second degree child abuse.

(c) For the purposes of this section, "serious bodily injury" means physical injury that:

(1) Creates a substantial risk of death;

(2) Causes protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily parts, member or organ, including any fractures of any bones;

(3) Causes serious disfigurement; or

(4) Evidences subdural hematoma, intercranial hemorrhage and/or retinal hemorrhages as signs of "shaken baby syndrome" and/or "abusive head trauma."

The penalties if convicted include any person who commits first degree child abuse shall be imprisoned for not more than twenty (20) years, nor less than ten (10) years and fined not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000). Any person who is convicted of second degree child abuse shall be imprisoned for not more than ten (10) years, nor less than five (5) years and fined not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000).

If you or a family member has been charged with a crime and you are on probation or bail for an earlier charge, allow Attorney Robert H. Humphrey's reputation, experience and skill to successfully guide you through the legal process. Please contact Attorney Robert H. Humphrey, Esq., at 401-816-5862 or e-mail him at

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