When we find out a client with a criminal case spoke to the police the reaction is basically something like, “Why oh why would you ever speak to the police? Have you never watched an episode of Law & Order???”
Speaking to the police after an arrest, or even at other times, can be held against you in court of law. Sound familiar? This stems from the 1966 U.S. Supreme Court case of Miranda v. Arizona.
You know the warnings…..
“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?”
That “anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law” means – ANYTHING!
Let’s say you are in the car after being arrested and you say something incriminating – the cops can use it against you.
Let’s say you are in a holding cell in the police station cursing and screaming – yes, that too.
And what if you meet someone lovely in that holding cell, you hit it off, and start chatting about your arrest? Yes, yes, yes. That conversation surely can and will be used against you. Count on it.
It is crucial, vital and imperative to the defense of your criminal case that from the second you encounter the police, in an arrest situation, that you do not discuss the actions that surround your arrest.
You can give your name. You can give them identification if they ask for it. You can ask to use the restroom or for a glass of water. But do not, under any circumstances, ever speak to the police without a lawyer present about anything of substance.
The police are allowed to “trick” you. They can be liberal with the truth in attempting to get you to speak. No matter how tempted you may be to talk – just don’t.
If it is important enough to their investigation they will get you a lawyer upon your request. Remember, it is okay if you can’t afford one. The police are legally obligated to provide one for you. And rest assured the lawyer, whether court-appointed or public defender, will come to your aide with the singular focus of doing what is best for you.
Call Lightning Legal Group for more on talking to the police, or any other criminal or family law questions. Our supremely qualified attorneys will give you their best advice and guidance. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 505-247-2390.