While many encounters between law enforcement officers and ordinary citizens will end in an arrest, certain scenarios or actions can increase the chance an individual will be taken into custody. In this blog, Minnesota criminal defense lawyers at Gerald Miller, P.A. provide suggestions that could reduce your risk of arrest in some circumstances.
Law enforcement officers will usually indicate that the best way to lessen your risk of arrest is to cooperate. This ruse is designed to encourage you to waive your rights and consent to answering questions and allowing searches.
What individuals facing arrest need to keep in mind is that the information provided and evidence discovered will be used to establish probable cause for an arrest and provide evidence in the criminal case.
Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Arrest
Be Invisible to Police
Police officers will not arrest you if they do not notice your presence. While doing something illegal is always a dicey proposition, a decision to engage in illegal activity like smoking marijuana should be carried out in the privacy of your home.
You can certainly be arrested for the illegal activity you perform within your residence, but you cannot be profiled while you are relaxing on the couch in your living room.
Even if you are engaged in legal activities, the police might still profile you based on the clothes you wear, the hours you are walking on public streets, or the display of a pot leaf bumper sticker. The police will notice these aspects of a person’s appearance for profiling purposes.
Police officers are more likely to notice people with appearances that stand out than people who have a bland or boring appearance.
Be Polite and Courteous
Confrontations with law enforcement often are intimidating and even insulting. In these situations, the best approach is to avoid insults and rude behavior despite the fact no one likes to be stopped and interrogated by police.
While it might be upsetting to be questioned in your vehicle or on the street by police, an arrest is much worse. As difficult as it might be to swallow an insult, sarcasm, or a rude comment, a war of words with a police officer is not the battle worth winning.
Rather, the focus for someone encountering a police officer is the one for custody of your person.
Request a Notice to Appear
If you realize you are going to get arrested, you should politely request a notice to appear as an alternative to being arrested. While you will still have to appear before a judge, you are allowed to appear on your own as opposed to being taken to jail.
You might appeal to the officer that you do not have a record or serious record and that an arrest and booking will damage your career, family, and/or education.
Do Not Try To Talk Your Way Out of Jail
Many people sitting in jail cells might have avoided incarceration had they asserted their constitutional rights rather than trying to talk their way out of an arrest. Law enforcement officers cannot arrest an individual without probable cause for an arrest. Many people intimidated during an encounter with the police feel compelled to answer questions.
In other cases, people feel that they can explain away an arrest. However, there is a much higher probability that the information you provide will furnish probable cause justifying your arrest.
Consenting to a search, which is another form of cooperation encouraged by the police, also will often turn up evidence used to justify your arrest. The best practice is to assert your rights to have an attorney present, remain silent, and insist on a warrant to conduct a search.
Still Have Questions? Seek Legal Help Now
We hope these tips are successful in reducing your risk of arrest. If you have been arrested for a crime in Minneapolis or the surrounding areas of Minnesota, we invite you to speak to an experienced Minneapolis criminal defense attorney at Gerald Miller, P.A. as soon as possible.
The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can start protecting your rights. Contact us today to schedule your free and confidential case evaluation.