Being questioned or detained by the police can be a frightening experience, even if you’ve done nothing wrong. At such times, it’s more important than ever to stay calm and controlled. Our criminal defense lawyer in Kitsap County Washington shares five top tips to help you navigate these interactions.
1. Never speak to a police officer.
We’ve all heard the words, “Anything you do say can and will be used against you in court.” Believe it. What you see as an innocent attempt to explain your actions may be construed as evidence, or even a confession. Police officers are even allowed to lie in order to solicit information from a suspect. Don’t respond to questions and don’t offer information.
2. Never lie to the police.
The only information you ARE obligated to provide is your legal name, date of birth, home address and telephone number. If you don’t give your name exactly as it’s listed on your driver’s license, it may be considered as giving false information. If anything else you say is later proven to be a lie, your credibility will be irreparably damaged.
3. Never consent to a search of your property.
In order to conduct a search during a traffic stop, police officers are required to have probable cause. When you consent to a search, you’re releasing an officer from the probable cause standard. There are countless stories of people who have been caught with contraband that they weren’t even aware of.
4. Never take a field sobriety test.
There is no legal requirement to take a field sobriety test. If you fail, it will be used against you. If you pass, you can still be arrested. It’s a no-win situation.
5. Always seek legal counsel.
Before saying anything to a police officer, tell them you want to speak to your criminal defense lawyer in Kitsap County Washington, then invoke your right to remain silent.
Don’t fight your legal battles alone. Contact us at LaCrosse & Murphy, PLLC for capable and experienced assistance from our criminal defense lawyer in Kitsap County Washington.