By: Bogdan Moisa
A police force has the duty to protect the citizens, but very often many people are victim of police brutality! It is important to know your rights if you are arrested. The constitution guarantees every citizen the right to a fair trial and until you are condemned by a law court, you have the benefit of the doubt!
If you are stopped by police, it is best to fully cooperate, but within the limits of the law! Do not do hesitate to ask questions. You have the right to know for what you are arrested. Also, you can refuse to give certain answers, but keep in mind that in some states you need to identify yourself.
At the site of the arrest, the police will search you for weapons and will take your belongings. Your items will be held for safekeeping and you will be given a voucher with a number which you can use to get your stuff back. However, contraband items will be confiscated and you won’t be able to get them back and you can be accused with possession of contraband items. If you plan on going to an illegal protest or action, leave valuables home, but take some identification papers like your driver’s license.
If you are handcuffed, stay calm and fully cooperate with the police. If you have been wronged or suffered unjustified violence when you have been arrested, do not try to resist, as you can’t defend your right all by yourself. Any mistreatment will be discussed with your lawyer.
Keep in mind that you have the right to call your lawyer. The police officers should let you tell your family or friends. If you can’t afford a lawyer, you have the right to a free one. It is important to call your lawyer as soon as you can. Inform him or her about the situations as clearly as possible. Your lawyer will visit you to discuss further issues before you are taken to court. At this moment, your attorney is your best friend. Fully trust and cooperate, as your case will depend a lot on the information you give.
While you are waiting for your case to be discussed in court, you will be offered meals and proper accommodation. Court proceedings can be long and tiring so it I important to save your energy and strength. Have patience, keep calm and answer all questions as clearly as possible!