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Giving Your Name And Address
The police do not have the right to demand your name or address without a reason. Generally, a police officer can only ask you to give your name and address if they believe you:
- have committed an offence
- are about to commit an offence.
For example, a police officer can ask you for your name and address if they believe you bought alcohol and you are under 18.
Other times the police can ask for your name and address if:
- you are driving a vehicle or boat and a police officer signals for you to stop. You must stop and show the police officer your licence or permit
- you are on the tram, train, bus or on public transport property
- you are in a hotel or licensed premises
- they believe you have information that could help them investigate an indictable offence. They must tell you what offence they think you can help them investigate.
The police must tell you why they want your details. If they dont give you a reason, you should ask for it.
It is an offence to refuse to give police your name and address, or to give police a false name and address, if they have a lawful reason to ask you for your details.
Example Of How Talking During Police Questioning Can Go Wrong
An example of this scenario is a scene from one of my favorite movies, My Cousin Vinny.
In this scene, Billy Gambini Is being questioned for murder when he thinks hes being questioned for shoplifting. During questioning, Billy seeks clarification from Sheriff Farley when confusion naturally arises.
While under that misbelief, the questioning progresses as follows:
- Sheriff Farley: At what point did you shoot the clerk?
- Billy Gambini: I shot the clerk?
- Sheriff Farley: Yes, when did you shoot him?
- Billy Gambini: I shot the clerk?
As you can see, Billy believed he was being questioned for inadvertently taking a can of tuna without paying for it. He was being questioned for murder, and his surprise at being accused of murder was misapplied as a confession to a crime that he did not commit nor realize had even happened in the first place.
While this is, of course, a made for entertainment example, this situation has the potential of occurring in any police questioning.
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Do Not Wait To See What Will Happen Call Our Attorneys Today
The police are very good at investigating suspected crimes. They use many methods to gain information that helps their investigation. Those methods include casual, nonthreatening questioning. There are often lengthy delays between questioning or searching, and criminal charges. The fact that questioning feels casual and polite, or the fact that a delay occurs after a search, does not mean that the matter is disappearing.
Having a lawyer in your corner before charges are filed can have an enormous impact.
If law enforcement has searched your home or car or has asked you questions in any way, call or contact our Boulder law firm online, right away. Time is of the essence and it is absolutely essential to have a lawyers help. You cannot talk the police out of charging you, and wishing an investigation would cease will not make it go away.
How Can Police Help
- Is there an immediate fear of it about to happen?
- Is it life threatening?
If you answer YES to any of these questions call Triple Zero and ask for Police.
If you are speech or hearing impaired – call the national relay service on 133 677.
All information provided is extremely important to the safety of victims and the police. The Triple Zero operator will ask a number of questions that you will need to answer to the best of your ability:
- Your location or address
- Type of premises, eg. house, unit and on which level
- What is actually happening now?
- Do you know of any firearms in the premises or that the other person may keep somewhere else?
- Where is the offender now, eg. Are they still at the location?
- How many children are present and where are they?
- Has any alcohol or drugs been consumed?
- Does any person have a medical or psychiatric history?
- Is there an enforceable AVO in place?
- Relationship of the persons, if known
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When And How To Call The Police In The Us
It is good to know what to do when there is an emergency. Knowing when to call the police is important. When you call the police, you can help protect yourself and contribute to being a good citizen. You can call the police from any phone in any place in the USA by dialing 911. Also, learn what to do if you , who the police are, and their responsibilities.
Dos And Donts During Arrest
- Do clearly state that you are exercising your right to remain silent and want an attorney.
- Do remember the officers names if you believe they violated your civil rights.
- Do take deep breaths and try to remain calm.
- Dont argue with police officers about the arrest or the validity of the charges.
- Dont resist arrest and keep your hands in plain sight.
- Dont swear or yell at the arresting officers.
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What Can Go Wrong
Walking into a police station without a lawyer is taking an unnecessary risk. Its impossible to know what the police intend to gain from a round of questioning. They might already have enough to make an arrest.
The following are just a few of the many things that could go wrong.
Should You Talk To Police Without A Lawyer
No, you should not talk to the police without a lawyer if they are investigating you for a crime.
Get an attorney for police questioning if you want to protect your case and legal rights. Law enforcement can use your statements against you as evidence. You could accidentally make statements that make you look guilty without a lawyer present.
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Ask Why You Are Being Detained
If the officer confirms that you are being detained, you may ask why. An officer is only allowed to arrest you if they have probable cause that you have committed a crime, or if they have a valid warrant for your arrest. Once the officer clarifies the reason for your detention, remain quiet. Do not attempt to explain or justify the situation. You may relay the why to your attorney later, but trying to explain to the officer rarely results in a favorable outcome.
Answering Questions From The Police
Police have powers that allow them to ask questions and interview you in certain situations. It is important to understand your legal rights in relation to these powers.
Generally, the police have the right to ask you questions at any time, even if you have not been arrested. Although they are allowed to ask you questions, this does not mean you always have to answer them.
In WA, you have a general right to silence, which means you normally do not have to answer questions from police. There are some questions that by law you must answer, for example, your name, address and date of birth.
If the police tell you that you must answer a question by law, and you do not answer or you lie, you may be charged with an offence.
This webpage will help you to understand more about answering questions from the police. Find out:
- Do I have to answer police questions?
- What questions do I have to answer?
- How do I exercise my right to silence?
- What happens if I answer police questions?
- What are taped or written records of interview?
There is an Infosheet that provides more detail about answering questions from police.
Do I have to answer police questions?
Police generally have the right to ask you questions at any time, however:
- you cant be questioned about an offence while youre being searched, and
- there are only some questions you must answer, others you can refuse because of your right to silence.
What questions do I have to answer?
How do I exercise my right to silence?
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Giving A Video Recorded Statement
In some cases, if the police believe you to be vulnerable or intimidated as defined by law, you can make a video recorded statement instead of a written statement.
Video recording is mostly used if you are under the age of 17 or are the victim in a sensitive case, for example a sex crime. You will usually be asked to go to a specially equipped video suite, which is situated in certain police stations. In some cases the police may bring recording equipment to your home or other venue that you have agreed.
The police officer who is carrying out the interview will explain how its done before the recording begins. If you are a young person making a video recorded statement, a supporter will be with you during the interview.
The police officer will not discuss the evidence that you are going to give before the interview is recorded. This is to make sure that you give the most accurate description of what you saw or know.
Do Cops Call To Ask You Questions
Police can ask you questions by phone or in person. In general, they may try to reach out to you by phone for initial questioning and to schedule a follow-up meeting in person. If you have been avoiding their efforts, they could show up at your work or home.
It is better if they do not visit with you in person. Simply tell them that you will not respond to questions without a lawyer. You can then leave it at that and allow the investigation to continue without you, or you can involve a criminal defense lawyer to learn more about the ongoing investigation.
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Why Are The Police Looking For Me
If you are a potential suspect in a crime, there are generally two reasons why the police may be looking for you and would come to your house or call you on the phone. First, it is possible that the officer has already obtained a warrant for your arrest. Second, the officer may still be investigating the case and would like to interview you in order to obtain potentially incriminating evidence. It does not matter in which case you find yourself. If the police want to talk to you, you need to speak with a criminal defense lawyer before you agree to an interview with a police officer. This is true even if you believe that you have not done anything illegal.
Emergency Caller Location Information
If you are calling from a mobile phone the Emergency Caller Location Information system allows automatically generated information about the location of that device to be made available, at the time of the call, to the emergency service . ECLI information indicates the approximate geographical position of a mobile device and is generated by an emergency 111 call from that device. Using ECLI improves the accuracy and speed with which Emergency call takers can verify a callers location.
The system is managed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the process and system has been included in a Code of Practice issued by the Privacy Commissioner. Police will only hold the ECLI for the purpose of responding to an emergency call and will keep a record of the information that was relied upon to respond to the call.
Like all personal information held by Police, an individual is entitled to access their personal information and to ask for it to be corrected if necessary.
To access more detailed information about ECLI and a list of FAQs please refer to the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment website
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Questions You Can Ask During An Interaction With Police
June 6, 2022 by Christopher Brown, Esq.
Encounters with the police can be stressful. Its recommended that you act calm toward a police officer-even if you believe that you are being wrongfully arrested. However, you have the right to ask the officer questions. In the heat of the moment, you might struggle to put your thoughts into words, so this article provides you with a list of questions that are good to remember during any interaction with the police.
Are There Any Exceptions To The General Rule That I Do Not Have To Answer Questions
Yes, there are two limited exceptions. First, in some states, you must provide your name to law enforcement officers if you are stopped and told to identify yourself. But even if you give your name, you are not required to answer other questions. Second, if you are driving and you are pulled over for a traffic violation, the officer can require you to show your license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance .
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When Police Questioning Could Lead To A Search Warrant
Law enforcement officers can ask a judge to execute a search warrant after police questioning. Police questioning is an evidence-gathering mission for them. If this situation happens to you, be aware that you do not have to let them in until you have a chance to review the warrant.
Here is what you are looking for:
What If I Am Arrested Do I Have To Answer Police Questions
Upon arrest, it is your right to be promptly advised of the reason for your arrest. If you have been arrested and are unsure of the reason, you may politely ask the officer the reason for your arrest. You also have the right to speak to a lawyer immediately. If you dont have a lawyer, the police are required to connect you to one for free and provide you a telephone in order to make the call. The call to the lawyer should be conducted in privacy. The police must not ask you any questions until you have completed your call. When being questioned by the police, you do not have to answer any of their questions. This is your right to silence.
Please note that this is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice to you. Legal advice pertaining to your particular situation can only be given by a lawyer who has met with you to obtain all pertinent background information necessary to give you a formal legal opinion.
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Am I Eligible For Bail
Depending on the nature of the crime, you might be eligible for bail on the same day as your arrest. Bail is a promise that you will return for all court hearings and appointments, remain in the jurisdiction and agree to any other conditions.
Some police stations can process your bail payment on-site. Otherwise, youll have to see a judge and request bail.
Think About The Repercussions
Research shows that people of color are stopped, arrested, and detained more often than their white counterparts in the United States. For this reason, it’s important to think about what could potentially happen if you call the police on someone who might be doing something wrong but isn’t necessarily putting anyone else at risk.
In situations like these, the people who contacted the police not only tied up their time unnecessarily but they also put people of color at risk. This is not something you would want on your conscious.
The next time you see a situation that you think might be questionable, stop, and take a breath. As long as no one is in danger or there’s no crime taking place, it might be best to hold off on contacting the police.
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Do I Need A Lawyer For Preliminary Arraignment
When you retain a criminal lawyer and turn yourself in, the magistrate is likely to set bail at a lower amount a the preliminary arraignment because the fact that you retained counsel and voluntarily turned yourself in shows that you are not a flight risk and are prepared to answer to the charges. On the other hand, if you fail to turn yourself in, the prosecutor may argue that you are a flight risk and seek higher bail. At trial, the prosecutor may ask for a flight instruction in which the judge will tell the jury that flight could be construed by the members of the jury as consciousness of guilt. Therefore, if you believe that you are under investigation or learn that the police have obtained a warrant, you should always retain an attorney before turning yourself in or giving any kind of statement.