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Know Your Rights When Dealing With The Police

Police are powerless when you know your rights and use them, know your rights when dealing with police officers.

Police Officers don’t like to hear these words:

“I Don’t Answer Questions”

“I Don’t Consent to a Search”

“Am I Free to Go?”

Know Your Rights During a Traffic Stop or With an Encounter With Police Officers

1. Your Safety – When being pulled over by the police pull over to a safe place, turn off your ignition, stay in your vehicle and keep your hands on the steering wheel. Take a few breaths, relax and try to stay calm. Be polite and courteous. At night, turn on the interior light. Don’t be searching for your insurance and license, wait until the officer asks for them. Tell the officer where you will be reaching. Keep your license, registration and proof of insurance near you like in your “sun visor.” After you give the officer your papers, put your hands back on the steering wheel. If you’re told to get out of your vehicle, take your keys, license and insurance with you. Close and lock your car door when you get out.

2. Don’t Answer Any Questions – Other than saying “yes sir or no ma’am” to the officer don’t say another word or answer any questions. Police officers are not your friends. The Supreme Court says you should never talk to the police when being questioned. Don’t ever speak to the police, but there’s a catch. A new Supreme Court ruling says, “you have to tell the police that you’re going to remain silent” and then don’t say another word.

 The officer will usually ask questions like,  do you know why I pulled you over or how fast do you think you were going?” Stay calm and be respectful, but don’t answer any question. No matter what the officer tells you, you are not required by law to speak or answer questions. Anything you say can and will be used against you at any time by the police. Bite your tongue! If you can keep your mouth shut you just might come out ahead more than you expected.

3. When Asked Just Say NO To Searches! – If police officers didn’t need your permission to search, they wouldn’t be asking you. Never give permission for a police officer to search you, your vehicle or your home. Even if you haven’t done anything wrong always, be polite and say loud enough “I don’t consent to a search.”

 If the police officer believes he has probable cause and says he’s going to search you or your vehicle, then just relax and let him search. Be polite and tell the officer “I don’t consent to a search.” Police are allowed to pat you down for weapons if you’re being “detained.” Ask the officer if you’re being detained and for what reason. Police are not allowed to go inside your pockets and pull out your property unless you have been arrested. There’s NO law that requires you to remove anything from your pockets or take off your shoes and socks. Always politely refuse a search and say “I don’t consent to a search.”

4. Am I Free to Go? – As soon as the police officer asks you a question, ask him “Am I Free to Go?” You have to ask if you’re free to go, otherwise the courts have ruled that you’re voluntarily staying and talking to the police. If the officer says you’re being detained or arrested, tell the police officer “I’m going to remain silent or say I don’t answer questions.”

 During a traffic stop a good time to ask “Am I Free to Go?” is after the police officer has given you a warning or a ticket and you have signed it. Once you have signed the ticket the traffic stop is legally over, says the Supreme Court. There’s no law that requires you to stay and talk to the police officer or answer any questions. After you have signed the ticket and have your license tell the officer  have a good day, roll your window up and leave. If you’re outside your vehicle ask the police officer, “Am I Free to Go?” If he says yes then get in your car and leave.

When Can a Police Officer Stop Someone?

Before police officers can properly stop a person and ask for identification, the officer must have RAS, reasonable articulable suspicion that a crime has occurred or is about to occur. This means the officer must be able to state facts and circumstances that would lead a reasonable person to believe that a crime occurred or soon will.

 For example, if an officer observes a car driving lawfully in the early morning hours, those facts alone are not sufficient to indicate that a crime occurred, and the officer could not properly stop the vehicle. On the other hand, if the officer had information that a car of the same color, make and model, and with the same number of occupants, just left the scene of a nearby crime, the officer would have specific facts suggesting that a crime occurred involving the occupants of the car and could lawfully stop the vehicle. Even if it turns out the car wasn’t the getaway car, the stop is still lawful because the officer had reasonable suspicion.

Anything You Say Can and Will Be Used Against You!

You have every right NOT to talk to a police officer and you should NOT talk to a police officer unless you have first consulted with a lawyer. You can’t be arrested for not talking. Police officers depend on fear and intimidation to get what they want and this includes forcing you to give up your rights. The government made a law that allows police officers to lie to citizens. This is another reason not to trust the police.

 Never voluntarily talk to the police, there’s no such thing as a “friendly chat.” Let the police officer do all the talking and you remain silent. The Supreme Court has ruled that you should NOT talk to a police officer even if you have NOT been arrested or after you’ve been arrested. You must always say out loud these magic words, “I’m going to remain silent or say I don’t answer questions.”

 It can be very dangerous to talk to a police officer. Innocent people have talked to the police, and ended up in jail or prison because they spoke to a police officer without an attorney.

 If a police officer starts being a bully, intimidating you and you do what the police officer “asks” you to do because you’re “afraid,” the Supreme Court has ruled you have done so voluntarily.

 Passengers traveling in your vehicle need to know they have rights as well. In many states the law doesn’t require you to identify yourself if you’re a passenger. Passengers have the same rights, NOT to talk to the police. Police sometimes will separate the passengers and ask questions to see if their stories match up. All passengers should always give the same answer, “I Don’t Answer Questions” and ask “Am I Free to Go?”

When Can Police Officer Search Your Car Without a Warrant?

1) If you give permission for the police to search.

2) Police Officers can search your car if they see something illegal “in plain view.” If the officer walks up and can plainly see an open container of alcohol, bag of weed or the cop smells weed coming from inside the car.

3) Your car can be searched if an officer has probable cause to suspect a crime. For example, it’s not illegal to have blood on your front seats, to have a black eye, or to have a ripped-up purse in the car. But all those things in conjunction could be suspicious to an officer.

Never Open Your Door at Home When the Police Knock!

When the police knock on your door at your home, there’s no law that requires you to open your door to the police. *Don’t open your door, ignore them, don’t say anything and they’ll go away. “Don’t worry if the police have a search warrant they won’t be knocking, they will be kicking down your door.”

* In some emergency situations police are allowed to enter your home. For example when someone is screaming for help from inside your home, police are chasing someone into your house, police see a felony being committed or if someone has called 911 from inside your house.

 The Supreme Court has ruled if ANY occupants inside your house gives the police permission to enter your home, then the police now have the right to enter your home and search. If your children, spouse, visiting neighbor, friend or anyone that is inside your home can give the police permission to enter and search even if you say no.

 Guests and roommates staying in your home/apartment/dorm need to be told of their rights and not to open your door to the police or invite the police inside without your permission. Police officers are like Vampires, they need your permission to come into your home.

Police Officers Are Allowed to LIE To Make You Talk

 The following are lie’s cops use when they’re trying to get you to talk: “You will have to stay here and answer my questions,” “you’re not leaving until I find out what I want to know.” “I have evidence against you, so tell me what you know or else.” “If you don’t answer my questions you’ll be charged with resisting arrest, obstruction or hindering an investigation.” (Police Officers can fabricate fake evidence to convince you to tell them what they want to know.)

Can We Trust Police Officers?

The Supreme Court has ruled that police officers can lie to the American people. Police officers are trained at lying, twisting words and being manipulative. Police officers are very skilled at getting information from people. So don’t try to outsmart a police officer because you will lose! If you can keep your mouth shut, you just might come out ahead more than you expected.

 Although police officers may seem nice and pretend to be on your side when really they want to learn about your habits, opinions, and affiliations of other people you know. Answering police officers’ questions can be very dangerous! You can never tell how a seemingly harmless bit of information that you give to a police officer might be used and misconstrued to hurt you, your family or a friend.

If You’re Arrested

“I WILL NOT TALK UNTIL I HAVE A LAWYER!”

* Don’t answer any questions the police ask you, (except for your name and date of birth once you’re at the jail.) Any other questions the police officer asks you, just say I want a lawyer.

* Never talk to other jail inmates about your case.

* Within a reasonable amount of time after you have been arrested and booked, the cops should allow you to make a phone call to a lawyer, bail bondsman, relative or any other person you choose. The cops cannot listen to your phone call if you’re talking to your lawyer.

* The longest you can be held in jail without seeing a judge is 72 hours. Generally, you will get out of jail within 4 to 24 hours if you can make bail.

* If you’re on probation or parole, only tell your P.O. that you’ve been arrested and don’t say anything else.

 The information on this website does not constitute legal advice. The purpose of this information is to provide general information to the public, to raise awareness and as a public service. Do NOT read anything here and make a decision affecting your legal rights. Conduct your own research of your state and federal laws.

Updated: 01.14.2022

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