If you are arrested the #1 thing you need to do is cooperate. Even if you believe that the arrest is unwarranted you don’t need to argue with officers or try to pull away or run away because you will end up with additional charges. Once you are taken into custody they will do a preliminary search of your person for weapons. If you have any weapons or drugs on you that is the time to tell officers to avoid additional changes once you get to jail. If you are asked questions at the scene BEFORE you are arrested you are not required to answer, and the officers do not have to read you your Miranda Rights; but if you choose to answer your responses can be used against you. If you are questioned after you are taken into custody you MUST be read your Miranda Rights, but you still have the option to remain silent.

Important rights to remember:

  • The right to remain silent;
  • The right against self-incrimination;
  • The right to have an attorney present WHILE being questioned;
  • The right to stop answering questions at any time, seen if you have started answering questions;
  • The right to know the identity of the police officers who are dealing with you;
  • The right to communicate by telephone with your attorney, family, friends or bondsperson by telephone as soon as practicable after you are brought to the jail. (They have the right to complete their booking procedures before you are allowed to use the phone.)

If you want a lawyer present during questioning you MUST tell officers. Once you request an attorney ALL questioning MUST STOP.  If you do not wish to speak with officers you MUST state that you wish to remain silent. IF IN DOUBT, DON’T SPEAK!

Miranda v. Arizona

Fifth Amendment