My friend got pulled over. I pulled my car over and got out of my car and began talking with my friend (trying to give him support) the police officer (whose was back at his car) told me to step away. I told him I was his friend and the officer still told me to back off. Was it illegal for me to talk with my friend whose been pulled over?
4 Answers from Attorneys
Not necessarily, but for officer safety, and for security purposes, the officer has to exercise extreme precautions at times, especially in this day and age.
It was legal for you to talk to your friend, it was also perfectly legal and appropriate for the office to ask you to back away.
To the officer you and your friend are too strangers who could be law abiding or fugitives from justice. He was trying to exercise control over a situation so that the two of you could not overpower him. You know that you are a good guy, but he does not and his life might be lost if he is not vigilant.
It is not initially illegal but if the officer is telling you to back away then is quite foolish not to listen. You do not say why your friend was pulled over but if you persist in speaking to your friend when the officer is advisng you to back away, he could potentially charge you with a hindereing or obstruction of justice if your friend was found with something illegal. The Officer was also exercising caution. If the cop told you to move away and you continue to talk to your pal because you think you are being a great guy, what you are actually doing is failing to exercise common sense. In the future wait until after the officer leaves to be a pal otherwise you are looking to perhaps make a difficult situation worse.