Penal Code Section 148.2 – Interfering with Firemen and Rescue Personnel

Pursuant to Section 148.2, it is a misdemeanor to “willfully” obstruct firemen or other emergency rescue personnel form discharging to attempting to discharge their official duties under any of the following circumstances:

  1. By resisting or interfering with the lawful effort of a fireman or emergency rescuer in the discharge or attempted discharge of an offcial duty;
  2. Disobeying the lawful order of a fireman or public officer;
  3. Engaging in disorderly conduct which delays or prevents a fire from being timely extinguished;
  4. By forbidding or preventing others from assisting in extinguishing a fire, or by exhorting a person you have no legal right or obligation to protect or control from assisting in extinguishing a fire.1


A defendant acts “willfully” if he acted with a purpose or willingness to commit the act.3

A “public officer” includes any person whose official position by the constitution or authorized by some statute.4


Any person found guilty of violating Penal Code Section 148.2 may receive a misdemeanor conviction, probation and a sentence of 0 to 180 days in jail.

Sources Cited / Notes:

1 Penal Code Section 148.2.
2 Penal Code Section 7(1)
3 People v. Olsen (1986) 186 Cal.App.3d 257, 266 [private paramedic is not a public officer]