What To Do After an Arrest
Top 8 Dos and Don’ts After an Arrest
If you were arrested, it is important to know that just because you were arrested does not mean you are GUILTY. Any arrest is serious and could have lasting consequences, which why it is important to know your rights and to hire an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the criminal justice system.
With that in mind, here are the Meldon Law criminal defense attorneys Top Dos and Don’ts for if you are arrested.
- Remain silent – You have the absolute right to remain silent. Use it. Your silence can’t be used against you, but your words can.
- Request an attorney – If you are in custody and the officer wants to question you, they will need to read you your Miranda warnings. In those warnings, you will be told you have the right to have an attorney present during questioning. Invoke that right by stating, “I want an attorney.” The officer will have to stop the questioning / interview.
- Hire an attorney – The old saying is the man who represents himself has a fool for a client. It is in your best interest to have an attorney represent you. When choosing an attorney, you may want to consider if they specialize in a area, how much experience do they have, are they a local attorney, etc.
- Talk yourself into more trouble – Once those handcuffs hit your skin, the likelihood that you will be able to talk your way out of the arrest is extremely small. Anything you say can and will be used against you.
- Talk on the phone – Once in jail you, will be able to make phone calls. These calls are recorded and prosecutors have access to these calls. If you make statements or talk about the facts, those calls can be used as evidence against you.
- Talk in court – When in court, whether it is at your first appearance, arraignment or pre-trial conference, it is not the time to plead your case. Not to sound like a broken record, but these proceedings are recorded, and again your statements can be used against you.
- Represent yourself – Even as an attorney who practices criminal defense, I wouldn’t even represent myself. As soon as you can, hire an attorney.
- Wait – After an arrest, don’t put your head in the sand and just hope for the best. Hire an attorney as soon as possible so they can get to work collecting and reviewing evidence, investigating the facts, and developing trial strategy and potential defenses.
If you have been arrested or charged with a misdemeanor drug offense in North Central Florida, it is important to speak with an attorney with knowledge of the options that you may have and that each individual county offers. Call Meldon Law at 352-373-8000 to make an appointment to speak with an attorney for a free consultation.