How to Talk to the Police if Your Suspected of a CrimeWritten by Susan Chana Lask, Esq.
If you’re suspected of a crime, police can come to your house or work or find you on street to talk to you. Usually it will be a detective in plain clothes in an unmarked car who will want to talk to you. You might find a card from detective under your door, or a message on your phone from him asking you to call. You always have right to remain silent, as anything you say to a police detective will be used against you in court. You also have right to be represented by an attorney when talking with police. Just because a detective comes around looking for you doesn’t mean you have to speak to him or see him at police precinct. If detective is at your door, you don’t have to open it for him unless he has a warrant. If a detective is knocking at your door, you don’t have to answer. You can wait until he leaves if you want and then of course call your attorney. Usually, a detective will hound you to come into precinct headquarters to "talk". But once you set foot into precinct, detective will have you at his mercy, where he can use different routines - such as "good cop/bad cop" - or violate your rights just enough to be "legal" to get you to talk. Maybe he’ll take your backpack from you or other property you came in with like your cell phone, then direct you to wait for him, leaving you alone in a room for what could feel like a lifetime. He may even ask you to write your version of story down and then use that against you later. The police are experts trained in gaining your trust and confidence. They know what to say and what tone to use with you. They will lie and misinform you to get information they want. They can tell you they have witnesses when they do not or say they will lower charges when they will not. The police most likely will not read you your rights because they want to create an informal, relaxed appearance so you will spill beans voluntarily.
Good Cop, Bad Cop If you’re not talking then detectives may use "good cop/bad cop" routine. The first cop sits alone with you in a small room and talks about "crime". If he’s not getting information he wants to hear to nail you, then you may find yourself standing at fingerprint machine with another more sensitive cop. Once you’re at fingerprint machine you can be sure you’re being charged despite fact that no one explained anything to you, read you your rights or told you what you’re being charged with. Part of game is to keep you disoriented and guessing your situation. If you hear new cop say "just tell detective what he wants to hear and you’ll get out of here faster on a lesser charge” then you are being "played" and you definitely need to keep quiet. Don't say something just because you think it will get you out faster, because you're already in there and you're going to go through arrest process no matter what. When police tell you consequences of a crime they intend to charge you with, or that they can lower charge, don’t believe anything they say. They can and will lie to you to get you to talk so they can make an arrest. The police are not your attorney, they are not your friends-- they are there to make an arrest. The only way to protect yourself is to remain silent at all times. Enforce your right by consistently and politely stating "I am remaining silent until I have counsel." The police can not interrogate you once you invoke that right, although they will try to interrogate you. They also can’t interrogate you unless they first read you your rights.
The Arrest Process in New YorkWritten by Susan Chana Lask, Esq.
www.appellate-brief.com When you’re arrested, your first contact will be with local police precinct. The person who arrests you is “arresting officer.” The arrest process can legally take up to three days (72 hours) before you see a judge for arraignment. Throughout this process, you must remain silent about everything, except you can give basic information such as your name, residence, and other identifying information. But do not speak about anything else to anyone, even person who might be in cell with you. Always remain silent until your attorney speaks with you because anything you say to nayone at this point can and will be used against you. At precinct, a detective will interview you to get basic information (like your full name, present address and family member contact information) and possibly try to get information from you to use as evidence against you. Do not say anything except give your basic identification. The detective may ask you for contact information of your family or friends who can verify who you are and where you live. If you provide your home number or other numbers then arresting officer may call your family or friends to verify your information. He may even ask further information about you that may incriminate you later. You should be careful what numbers you give out and at least call person who you may refer to police first and let them know just to verify who you are and nothing else. While you are at precinct, police will definitely run a check on you to discover if you committed other crimes or if outstanding warrants exist for your arrest. This information is also needed for arresting officer to fill out paperwork to get you through arrest process and to arraignment court. The police will fingerprint you and take arrest photos. Then arresting officer will make a file for you from information he obtains from you, prints, photos and his notes. He will then fax file to District Attorney’s office so they can draft a criminal complaint against you and assign your case file a docket number. You’ll sit in precinct jail cell an average of six hours until they can arrange transportation for you to another place called “Central Booking.” Whenever they transport you they will handcuff you, so be prepared to cooperate and go through motions. At Central Booking The Central Booking process can take about four hours. You’ll wait in line with hundreds of other arrested persons to get to an interview table. At interview table an intake person will ask you about any health problems you may have and more identifying information, including: