Eide v. State

In Eide v. State, 168 P.3d 499, 502 (Alaska App. 2007), the defendant was lying on the floor in a sleeping bag when the troopers came to arrest him. After telling Eide multiple times that he was under arrest, one of the troopers grabbed Eide's wrist and attempted to pull him up. Eide jerked his arm away and "turtled" into his sleeping bag, orienting his body so that his arms and wrists were underneath his torso and the troopers could not reach them to handcuff him. After repeatedly telling Eide to stop resisting arrest, the trooper used a taser on Eide. The trooper later explained that he was concerned that he or Eide would get hurt if he had to wrestle Eide into submission. After the trooper used the taser, Eide jumped up and submitted to the arrest. The Court upheld the trial court's judgment of acquittal in Eide, holding that the evidence was insufficient to establish the crime of resisting arrest. The Court based the decision directly on the legislative commentary to AS 11.56.700, which indicated that the legislature did not intend to criminalize "mere non-submission to an arrest." The Court noted that the commentary included an example of conduct that the legislature envisioned as the kind that creates a "substantial risk of physical injury" -- "fleeing in an automobile at high speed through a residential area" -- and concluded that "the gravity and imminence of the danger imposed by this conduct contrasts sharply with Eide's passive positioning."