Congdon Law. PLLC.

What Are The Common Types Of Encounters That Civilians Have With Law Enforcement?


The most frequent contact people have with law enforcement are traffic violations. Whether that encounter leads to something more serious will depend on the individual situation, but most police encounters begin with a traffic infraction.

What Are Some Common Mistakes That People Commit When It Comes Encountering Law Enforcement?

Oftentimes, people don’t know what they have to or do not have to do when police are speaking to them. For example, you do have to identify yourself. However, you do not need to consent to the search of your vehicle. Some people will just consent out of fear that the situation will get worse if they say no, but it’s best, under most circumstances, to decline an officer’s request to search your vehicle. That’s probably the biggest mistake people make.

How Commonly Do People Go Ahead And Give Police A Statement On The Spot?

It’s incredibly common for people to give statements and this is very frustrating for defense lawyers. Generally speaking, it’s not in your best interest to give a statement to law enforcement. That statement will be used against you, even if you think you are going to talk yourself out of trouble.

I Spoke To Police Before And After My Arrest Without An Attorney. Can They Use Any Of It Against Me?

Unfortunately, law enforcement will likely be able to use your statement. If you made a statement before you were under arrest, they do not have to read you your Miranda Rights. Law enforcement only has to read you your Miranda Rights if you are both in custody and they are interrogating you, so if you were making statements before you were under arrest, you are not considered to be in custody and Miranda would not apply. If they have arrested you, read you your Miranda rights, and then you give a statement, even if you didn’t have a lawyer present, that statement can be used against you because you’ve then waived your right to remain silent.

What Kind Of Training Do Law Enforcement Have When It Comes To Questioning People?

Law enforcement goes through significant amounts of training, in regards to encountering people, talking to people, and generally trying to get information. Their classes can last for weeks at a time and are updated each year to make sure they are on top of their training. They are trained to make questioning seem like a casual conversation when in fact, they are getting important information that can lead to more serious charges.

What Is The Difference Between Being Arrested And Being Detained?

On a basic level, being arrested and being detained are the same, in the sense that your freedom and ability to leave the scene of an encounter with law enforcement is inhibited. On a slightly deeper level, being detained is when you are being held temporarily for investigation. You can be detained at the scene but if you are arrested, you will be taken into custody by the police.

I Was Questioned By The Police At The Station. Were They Allowed To Lie To Me?

The police can and do frequently lie to people in order to obtain evidence, get confessions, move a case along, or support their theory of a case. There is absolutely zero law preventing law enforcement from lying to someone in their custody or someone they are speaking with.

For more information on Civilian Encounters With Law Enforcement, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (651) 314-9620 today.

Jennifer Congdon, Esq.

Call For A Free Consultation (651) 314-9620