• Remain Silent:
We cannot stress this point enough. Do not make any statements because anything you. say can and will be used against you. Even “I didn’t know it was there” can be twisted by. police and may contradict a legal defense your attorney later asserts on your behalf.
Be respectful but remain silent. “Officer, with all due respect, I do not wish to speak to you.” Bear in mind that police are allowed to mislead you during an investigation. They will try. to get you talking by any means necessary and may say things like they received information from a witness, etc. You must be clear and tell them you wish to remain silent. Only a clear invocation of your right to remain silent will result in the end of their questioning.
• Do not Consent to Searches:
This applies to your person, your property, and your surroundings. Do not consent to a police officer placing their hands on you (with the exception of a “pat down for officer safety.” Even then, police may not “manipulate” any items in your pockets—they are only allowed to do a brief pat-down for obvious weapons. If the police do not have a warrant, you do not have to consent to any sort of search of your body, your home, your vehicle, your property, or your immediate surrounding area. If police decide they want to search, they have already made up their mind to arrest you and now they are looking for evidence to support their arrest. Nothing good can come from consenting to a search.
• Revoke Consent to Search:
If you ignored our advice and gave consent to a search, you have the authority to revoke that consent at any time, unless contraband has already been discovered. Changing your mind may annoy a police officer, but it is your right to do so. Remember, you should not be concerned with the officer’s feelings—you should be concerned about the preservation of your rights!
• Do not Make Deals:
Often, police will make promises. They will tell you they aren’t interested in you, but rather they want the “big fish.” “Tell us who your dealer is and we’ll talk to the State Attorney for you.” Remember what we said earlier: police are allowed to lie to you. Even if they’re telling the truth, they have no authority to negotiate any kind of deal with the State Attorney. Do not fall prey to this common police tactic. If there is a deal to be made, your attorney should be the one making it.
Hire an Attorney:
First, notify the police that you do not wish to speak to them without your attorney present. They are required to cease any and all communication about your case when you invoke your right to counsel. Then call Murphy’s Law Offices. Retaining an attorney at the earliest stages of your case is paramount. Often, the arrest can be challenged even before the State files formal charges against you. Hiring the right attorney may be the difference that prevents a disruption that can last the rest of your life.