Arrested – Know Your Basic Rights
If you are arrested for any crime, it is imperative that you understand that you should always invoke your right to remain silent and request to speak to an attorney before even considering giving any answers to questions they may try to ask. Be clear and unequivocal with both requests, which should then terminate or cease any further questioning and interrogation. You then should directly ask why you are under arrest and try to say as little as possible while doing this, but hopefully, the police officer will talk and maybe make a statement that could be used in a beneficial way later in court.
Regardless, it is crucial to understand that while this is always a very scary and confusing time and experience to have to go through, AT ALL COSTS – avoid being confrontational, rude, do not do anything remotely that could be construed as physical in nature to the arresting officer, because they could charge you with the additional criminal offense of assault on a public servant and/or resisting arrest. You have the right to inquire why the police officer is demanding you to go with them. If you are not under arrest then you do not have to go with the police, nor should you. If you are placed under arrest, a police officer should tell you the reason for why you were arrested. If you have been arrested and charged with a criminal charge, you do not have to answer police questions posed to you. The arresting officer usually will not inform you of your right to remain silent unless they have decided to charge you with a formal criminal offense. If they do not, and maybe the officer is fairly blasé about the matter, sometimes some of the more shrewd police officers will sometimes hold off on making the actual arrest (and therefore can wait to also give you the Miranda warnings) even though he already has the requisite level of probable cause to effectuate a proper and legal arrest.
- What Are Common Reasons That Sexual Assault Charges Are Made?
- How Often Do You Handle Cases Where Drugs And Alcohol Are Involved In The Sex Crime?
- What Are Some Defense Strategies Used In Sex Crime Cases?
- What Kind Of Recordings Are Made Available For Discovery In A DWI Case?
- How Can My Attorney Use The NHTSA Manual To Defend My DWI Case?
- What Is The Difference Between A Record Expunction And A Nondisclosure In Texas?
- Does It Matter If I Was Previously Placed On Deferred Adjudication For Another Offense?
- How Is A Drug Charge Determined To Be A Misdemeanor Or A Felony?
- How Is A Drug Offense Elevated To A Federal Charge In Texas?
- What Is The Definition Of Aggravated Assault Under Texas State Law?
- What Are The Penalties For An Aggravated Assault Conviction In Texas?
- What Are Possible Defenses To Aggravated Assault Charges In Texas?
- Intro To General Guidelines On Law Enforcement Encounters
- Types Of Law Enforcement Encounters
- Police Encounter – At Home In A Residence
- Police Questioning – Interrogation Techniques
- Common Mistakes Made After Being Arrested
- Arrest Proof Yourself
- Common Myths
- Know Your Basic Rights After An Arrest
- Relevant Information
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
In these situations, usually, they will try to postpone actually going through with making the full arrest in order to hopefully obtain more evidence from a talkative detainee (who usually doesn’t know or realize that they have the right to not answer questions and the right to silence). The adage “loose lips sink ships” certainly applies here in a very significant way. Once the suspect is actually arrested and Mirandized, the officer knows the likelihood of being able to wheedle even small tidbits of information is usually not going to happen. A police officer is only allowed to use ‘reasonable force’ to carry out their job. Stay cool and calm, and talk to a lawyer later about what you can do if you think the arrest was unfair or wrong or the police injured you.
After an arrest, there is no benefit to giving any statement to the police, especially without an attorney present. Immediately invoke your right to have legal counsel present, and clearly communicate that you will not answer any questions until you speak with an attorney. SAY NOTHING ELSE. If necessary, verbally repeat “I DO NOT WISH TO SPEAK OR SAY ANYTHING UNTIL MY ATTORNEY IS PRESENT.” Even if they have not been read your Miranda rights, still invoke your right to remain silent and clearly express your desire to exercise your right to have a lawyer present. Do not say or talk to anyone else at the scene, in the squad car, or at the jail. Do not make any jail phone calls that can possibly be incriminating. If you call anyone, call someone to help assist with your jail release and/or call an attorney. Say as little as possible and discuss nothing even remotely related to the incident. Realize it is likely recorded and could be used against you later in court.
Anytime you have an encounter with anyone working in law enforcement, you need to make sure you fully understand and will appreciate if you do the following:
- Be polite. This is probably Rule #1, and perhaps the most important rule of thumb overall. Being rude, argumentative, or combative with the officer will get you absolutely nowhere. Judges and Juries usually will hold against an individual, and it could also lead to the officer getting peeved and charging with additional offenses he might not have had you treated him with respect.
- ALWAYS be calm, cool, and collected. Being investigated and/or arrested is a nerve-racking experience, no doubt – but do your best to keep yourself in check and in control, both with what you verbally say and even with your body language. Even when refusing, it is very wise to ALWAYS be polite when expressing your intent to do so. Often it can prevent a situation from being worse if you are overly confrontational. I also believe it is always perceived positively if you insert “please” and “thank you” when you communicate with them, even when conveying something like how you will not consent to a search, or when you exercise your right to remain silent or your right to an attorney
- Realize you are likely being filmed and recorded, usually by video. The less you say, the better. Do not say anything that would possibly portray you in a negative light later to a jury or a judge in a hearing or a trial.
- Do not argue, beg, physically resist, or verbally abuse the police officers – regardless of how they are treating you.
- Never consent to any search, period (of your home/residence, your vehicle, your person, etc.) even if you believe you have nothing to hide. If you believe you are under arrest or are being questioned about a crime, immediately request to speak with an attorney, and other than communicating your correct name, address, and date of birth, make it abundantly clear that you wish to exercise your right to remain silent and you will not answer any questions without legal counsel present;
- Exercise your right to remain silent. After an arrest, there is no benefit to giving any statement to the police, especially without an attorney present. Immediately invoke your right to have legal counsel present, and clearly communicate that you will not answer any questions until you speak with an attorney. SAY NOTHING ELSE.
- If necessary, verbally repeat “I DO NOT WISH TO SPEAK OR SAY ANYTHING UNTIL AN ATTORNEY IS PRESENT.”
- Even if they have not been read you your Miranda rights, still invoke your right to remain silent and your right to have an attorney present.
- Do not say or talk to anyone else at the scene, in the squad car, or at the jail.
- Do not make any jail phone calls that can possibly be incriminating. If you call anyone, call someone to help assist with your jail release and/or call an attorney. Say as little as possible and discuss nothing even remotely related to the incident. Realize it is likely recorded and could be used against you later in court.
Make no attempts to resist the arrest, even if you believe the arrest is unlawful, not proper, or you feel it is unfair.
- Verbalize how you do not intend to physically resist the arrest, but do state verbally and aloud your request to exercise your right to remain silent and make a request for legal counsel immediately.
- Make no attempts to give explanations, excuses, or reasons for why anything, especially related to things related to the incident pertaining to the arrest. All attempts to talk your way out of this will fall on deaf ears, and it will no doubt be construed in some way by the arresting officers like you were trying to avoid the arrest because you knew you were guilty. Don’t play their game – you have the right to remain silent, use it – and let your attorney make whatever argument you have in court where it would now matter most.
- Make any necessary preparations for your family and for a personal affair in the event an arrest you believe is imminent. Try to commit to memory relevant numbers of points of contact, most specifically, the phone number of your attorney.
- Make plans ahead of time if you care for young children to ensure they are properly cared for.
- If you take medication, try to make sure you have everything ready to document once at the jail the proper medication is prescribed and when it should be administered. They will not go out of their way to do you any favors if this perhaps is a concern for you.
- Once at the jail and during the booking process, you are required to give basic information about yourself such as your name, your address, your date of birth, etc. However, beyond this basic information – always remember to you have the right to remain silent, so use it! Say it out loud if you want to – this could be beneficial, in that if others here you express your intent to remain silent and to have your right to legal counsel, it cannot be misinterpreted later that you never made such a request.
- Do not discuss or talk to anyone about any details of your case, especially without the physical presence of your attorney. Do not make any admissions, statements, answer any questions, do not sign anything including any documents presented to you, do not make any decisions at all even remotely related to your case, and do not even engage even in casual conversation with anyone at the jail, and if an individual or an entity persists in trying to make you do so, make it abundantly clear you will not do anything, AT ALL, without the direct advice and legal counsel from your attorney.
- Never discuss ANYTHING even remotely related to your arrest and/or your case without your lawyer present. Do not talk to police officers, individuals from the district attorney’s office, etc. even if they convey how they are trying to help you in some manner. Insist that this should only be done by and through your attorney, and specifically request that nothing of this nature be done without first speaking with your attorney.
- Always remember that anything you say can and, most likely, will be used against you later in court.
- Do not sign anything without a lawyer present and after they review the contents of the document. You may be waiving some or all of your rights or you may be making an admission or confessing to a crime.
- You will be handcuffed, searched, photographed, and fingerprinted for most offenses. Once at the precinct, you should be searched by an officer of the same gender or of the gender you request. If this does not happen, ask the police to explain why in their police log. • If you have children with you, you can ask the police to call a family member or friend before they take you away.
- Usually, you will be allowed to make at least one phone call, and in some case they allow arrested individuals to make several. BE CAREFUL. Always operate on the assumption that the police are listening or recording all of your conversations – because they usually do. It is advisable while in the custody at the jail, only make a call to your attorney. The police cannot listen or record any conversations that are shielded by the attorney-client privilege.
Call For A Free Consultation