People are arrested every day in Pennsylvania, and most of these people make their situation worse by making mistakes that can easily be prevented if they had followed some simple advice.. Unfortunately, some people are arrested simply for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but these suggestions can allow for a smoother arrest process. Here are 10 things to remember if you are ever arrested for a DUI in Pennsylvania:
Police Are Not Always Honest
Police sometimes say things that are not true to get you to confess to a crime. Do not believe them if they reveal they “got you.” It is not against the law for police to lie, and they certainly take advantage of this. Police are actually trained to lie to you to obtain any sort of confession. This method is called the Reid Technique, and it is used all the time to prove cases. Often times, police will separate friends during questioning and lie by telling them one of the friends ratted out the other(s). This tactic is perfectly legal, but do not believe them!
Do Not Speak
Take advantage of your right to remain silent. As mentioned above, police lie to get you to talk, but you do not have to say anything. You can protect your right not to incriminate yourself by staying quiet. Do not speak or answer any questions. Once you ask for a lawyer, the police do not have the right to question you. You do not need to tell the arresting officer you are innocent; the officer is not interested in whether or not you are innocent, they are more concerned about arresting you. Our attorneys at The Law Offices of Steven E. Kellis will fight for your rights, so don’t talk.
Do Not Run
Running from the police is an admission of guilt. If you feel the need to run, both you and the police know you have something to hide. You are only tacking on more charges, so be sure to stay put and follow the police officer’s instructions. Running also makes officers suspicious, so they might immediately draw their weapon. This can result in unnecessary harm or additional suspicion of you.
If Police Come to Your Home, Do Not Let Them In and Do Not Step Outside Your Home
Do not let police come into your home without your consent. You can say something like, “You may not enter my home” or “You need a search warrant first.” Do not let them make you feel like you must step outside your house to talk. You have the right to stay inside, and you also have the right to deny police entry into your home.
If You are Arrested Outside Your Home, Do Not Go Back Inside Under Any Circumstances
Once you are handcuffed, do not accept any offer to go back into your house for any reason. The police do not care if you are cold and need a jacket before you get into their vehicle. They may ask you if you would like to get an item once you are arrested, but that is their way of getting you back inside so they can search your home. Do not fall for this.
Never Resist Arrest
Resisting arrest only makes you look guilty. Not only that, but you will accrue more charges if you so much as touch a police officer. If you are being handcuffed and try to get out of the officer’s custody by swatting at their hands, the officer can easily report assault. This “assault” becomes a felony which increases your likelihood of jail time and generally does not benefit you. Avoid physical contact so you can avoid a felony.
Do Not Allow Searches
It is unlawful for police to perform a search without your consent (barring any warrants). Be confident and tell the police they do not have consent to search your home or vehicle. If they ask to search either one, tell them they do not have permission, even if you don’t think you have anything to hide. You never know if a friend or relative left something behind you would not want police to find.
Avoid Looking at Places You Do Not Want Police to Search
Police know you are nervous, and they are trained to watch you. If you do not want police to search a specific area after they have obtained a warrant, do not look in that direction or react in any fashion. The important thing to remember is look down during a search and do not answer any questions. No matter how terrified you may feel, do not say a word.
Never Talk Back to the Police
It is understandable that your arrest may make you angry, but never talk back to the police. Talking back only makes it worse for you because police officers are the ones ultimately prosecuting you. They have a say in what happens to you based on your behavior while being arrested, so remember not to say a word throughout the process. They have the power to change a misdemeanor to a felony, so it is best not to add fuel to the fire.
Remember Your Right to Remain Silent!
This cannot be stressed enough: Do not say a word! There is no need to attempt to convince the booking officer or anyone else of your innocence. The more you say, the more it works against you. Reserve your words for your attorney since courts give significant weight to these “confessions” before you even enter the courtroom. Remember to stay silent and let your lawyer do all the talking.
Following this advice will save you a severe headache in the short and long run. Be confident in your ability to protect your rights and do not let police bully you into doing something you are uncomfortable with. If you have been arrested for a DUI in Pennsylvania, contact an experienced Pennsylvania DUI lawyer here at The Law Offices of Steven E. Kellis today to assist you with your case. We are in your corner!