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If You Are Arrested, Do You Know What to Do?
Steps to take if Arrested
It is very important that each individual knows which steps to take in the event of an arrest. If you are arrested, it is vital that you take the proper steps to protect your rights and best interests. Most people have never been arrested, and it can be a very frightening and confusing situation. However, the steps below will keep you protected until you have a chance to speak with your lawyer:
- Remain Silent
- Refuse Consent to a Search
- Walk Away if You are not Under Arrest
- Request A Lawyer
In the event of an arrest, remain silent. If the officer requests your identification or other legal documentation (proof of insurance), provide that to them. If the officer asks any further questions, inform them that you would like your lawyer present before answering any questions. Silence could prevent you from compromising the defense of your case.
Refuse Consent to a Search:
If the arresting officer requests to search your vehicle or residence, refuse. If you decline consent to a search, the officer will need a valid warrant to obtain a right to search. After refusing consent to a search, inform the officer that you would like to speak with your lawyer before answering any additional questions.
Walk Away if You are not Under Arrest:
Often times, the arresting officer may "detain" individuals suspected of committing a crime. If you have been detained, simply ask the officer "am I under arrest or am I free to leave?" At this point, they will inform you of whether you are being arrested or whether you are allowed to leave. If the officer informs you that you are not under arrest, walk away from the situation immediately.
Request a Lawyer:
If you or a loved one have been arrested, for any reason, it is imperative that you contact a criminal defense lawyer in your area as quickly as possible. They can begin building a solid defense plan for your case that will help you to achieve your desired outcome. It is your right to have a lawyer present for any questioning by law enforcement. For this reason and others, contact a defense attorney as quickly as possible if you have been arrested.
Following the steps listed above will protect your rights in the event of an arrest. If you have any further questions, contact a local criminal defense attorney. They can answer your questions and help you develop a strategic defense plan that is specific to the details of your case.