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How to invoke your right to remain silent

On Behalf of | Jan 10, 2022 | Criminal Defense |

You were asked down to the police station to talk about a serious crime – an assault or murder – that the police are investigating. Despite reassurances from the police that they simply believe you had information that could help them crack their case, you quickly realize you’re a suspect.

It’s time to invoke your right to remain silent. (In fact, it would have been better if you had done that and spoken to your legal counsel before you ever agreed to talk to the police in the first place, but what’s done is done.)

Don’t wait until you’re given your Miranda Warning

A lot of people mistakenly believe that nothing they say to the police can be used against them in court unless they’ve been given their “Miranda Warning,” but that’s not true. The police are only required to give you that warning is when you are both in custody and being interrogated

That’s why the police “invited” you down to the station to talk – instead of hauling you there in handcuffs. Whatever they know (or think they know), it’s to their advantage to hold off on an arrest if they can get you to talk to them of your own free will. Anything you say really can – and will – be used against you later (along with a video of your interrogation).

The wisest thing you can do in this situation is to say something like, “I invoke my right to remain silent. I decline to answer any more questions except in the presence of my attorney.” This forces the police to either move forward with an arrest (if they have enough evidence) or let you leave (if they don’t have the evidence to keep you).

A lot of innocent people are afraid to invoke their right to remain silent and their right to counsel because they think it makes them look guilty. The reality is that invoking your rights cannot be held against you in court – and it’s the best protection you have against aggressive police investigation tactics.