You Have the Right to Remain Silent… or do you?

Know the LawWe have all heard that we have “the right to remain silent.” But when do we have the right to remain silent and what does that mean? The right to remain silent
attaches at the time of an investigative detention or arrest.

The “right to remain silent” prohibits police from questioning an arrestee without first advising him/her of the right to remain silent and not answer questions or possibly give incriminating statements.

What’s an investigative detention? An investigative detention occurs when a reasonable person would not believe that they have the right to walk away from a uniformed police officer. Recently the Superior Court issued an opinion that an investigative detention occurred when an officer asked a group of individuals to produce identification.

However, on April 12, 2012, the Supreme Court of Pa overturned that decision and said that merely asking for identification did not constitute an investigative detention.

Therefore, statements made by the defendants were admissible in court. The takeaway from this is that when confronted by a police officer, ask him if you can leave. If he says yes, LEAVE. If he says no, do not make any statements other than to identify yourself.

If he tells you that you have the right to remain silent, remain silent. If he tells you that you have the right to an attorney, you need to talk to an experienced criminal defense attorney, so call me at 610-945-9456.

Posted on December 16, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on You Have the Right to Remain Silent… or do you?.

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