If you’ve ever been under investigation by the police then you know that the officer will try to get you to admit fault. If a cop is reading you your Miranda rights, taking you into police custody, or fishing and asking you questions then you know what to do... That’s right. Shut up and LAWYER UP! What are some red flags you need to keep an eye out for when dealing with those cops at your door?
I’m Lawyer Alexandria Serra, this is Lawyer Talk Thursday (catch it every week on Instagram @alexandriaserra), and you’re about to find out.
If you’re a law abiding citizen you have nothing to worry about. If a cop comes knocking on your door asking you to come down for an interview — you have the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. That also goes for those of you who may have found a detective’s card on your door saying to call them. Know that you do not have to say or do ANYTHING.
Here’s a glance at the top 3 things you need to watch out for:
- Miranda rights are read to you when you are being asked interrogative questions. That means you are probably going to be taken into police custody.
- Police custody will only happen if you are in actual trouble.
- Pleading the 5th will make sure you are protected and not incriminating yourself.
When a detective is knocking on your door and you don’t know what it’s about, it’s probably not a good thing. Be sure to lawyer up immediately. Let your lawyer be the one to find out what the police want from you. Let’s take a closer look at these 3 red flags!
If the officer reads you your Miranda rights, you know you’re a suspect. Ask for a lawyer and get the heck out of there! It’s also a clue that you’re a suspect if they tell you that you’re being recorded then that’s definitely an indication that you’re in some legal trouble.
Texas state law actually gives more protection than the 5th amendment when it comes to incriminating statements. If you’re in custody and being questioned, then any statements they want to use against you must be recorded. Just remember to not say anything.
Of course, the police investigator is going to claim that the encounter was investigatory, like a routine traffic stop, or consensual, meaning you volunteered info, so heed my original advice - don’t talk to them!
That old saying cops use, “if you have nothing to hide.. why don’t you talk to me?” is part of their playbook! 99% of the time you say something that you don’t intend to say. Whether that is explicitly incriminating or not, the less you say the better. Unless you are an alleged victim of a
crime, under no circumstances will you walk into a law enforcement interview without an attorney. Period. No exceptions.
If you talk to the cops, you might as well arrest yourself. The best thing you can say is nothing. You know what I always say, “Shut up and lawyer up!”
Want to learn more? Feel free to email me at email@example.com.