What to Do If You Get Arrested?
There are always many things you should consider to do if arrested. These are just general opinions and are not legal advice, but they may be of some help down the road. It is always better to be informed and prepared if arrested. The main things are usually for you to know your rights, they are there to protect people. Remaining silent before speaking with an attorney is one the biggest things you should do and sometimes it the biggest thing people neglect in those situations. Stay silent about the arrest, be respectful, keep your emotions managed, and only talk to an attorney about things relating to your case. Nobody other than your lawyer will be able to provide you with actual law advice based on your situation and with a focus on what is potentially best for you.
Here are some of the general opinions on what to do if something like this happens.
Remain Silent – Anything can and will be used against you in the court of law, only your attorney can help you relay information properly if arrested. Law enforcement officers can lie to get you to say things and some are trained for those situations. Even something that seems innocent can be twisted in different ways.
Ask for an attorney or contact one when you can – The laws are very complicated and you need expert guidance your best course of action. Make sure your attorney is present for anything involving you, potential evidence, or the case in general. Let your attorney handle your case and provide you advice to make any decision.
Remain Calm – Emotions can get out of hand and in situations like this you need to minimize any negativity. Get through this without doing or saying something that can get you in more trouble. Do not say or do anything that can be misconstrued as negative or aggressive. These situations are hard to manage and they will not help your case. Keep your mind and body calm.
Be Respectful and Always Polite – Generally, in life, people who are kind to others have better results with those people. The same can be true for interacting with law enforcement as well. Resisting arrest, running, or badmouthing can cause you more damage in several different ways. It is never good to make things worse.
Try to remember every detail you can – Focus on remembering anything that can help you in court. Who the cops were, their badge numbers, the situation in general, etc. These details may help down the line.
You do not have to give permission for them to search for anything. They would conduct a legal search if they could, instead they want to take a chance and hope that someone makes it easy for them. Anything can be used against you in court, even things you may not know are there or aren’t even yours in the first place.
You do not have to let in police to your house/property without a warrant. You may not even be required to step outside or even open your doors. In most cases, it may be better to keep some legal separation between you and them. They need evidence of a crime or suspected evidence to take action. Any type of unwarranted entry tactics may be used to gain lawful access. The truth may be hard to find during these situations. Some people get arrested outside their home, then the police ask if the person wants to step inside the home for any reason. They can use that opportunity to step inside as well.
In case of DWI or DUI, your choices are limited. Laws have changed that try to coerce testing in a way. Those who refuse to test can automatically lose their license for 180 days for the first refusal. They are able to request a hardship exemption after 90 days, but it depends on their circumstances. Those who accept testing may be giving evidence to their potential criminal case. A decade ago most lawyers maybe always said not to blow or allow sobriety testing. These days it really depends on the lawyer and what they personally recommend. We can’t provide actual law advice. Criminal lawyers are the experts on these things. In general, most believe it’s better to stay safe by not driving drunk or buzzed. Get a ride where you need to be, make plans ahead of time, there are plenty of ways to only drive when you are sober.
These are just some general opinions for knowing your rights.