Talk to the Police?

You have a right to remain silent.

The police cannot force you to talk. Massachusetts law allows the police to lie to you and trick you in order to get you to talk. The courts do not require the police tell you the nature of the crime they are talking to you about.

Anything you say can be used against you.

If you decide to talk to them, they will use it against you. They are not trying to get your side or hear you out. They are trying to get you to say something that they can use against you.

You have the right to an attorney.

You can ask the police to call an attorney to help you. The police are professionals. They are questioning you for a reason. They are telling you that you have the right to bring in your own professional to help you.

Imagine being in a boxing ring against a professional fighter and before the fight starts your opponent tells you that you can have your own professional fighter if you ask for one.

If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one.

You don’t even have to pay a professional fighter to come to help you. You get one for free.

You can stop questioning any time.

Pencils have erasers for the same reason this fifth warning is recommended by Massachusetts courts: mistakes happen. If you start answering questions (which you shouldn’t) and get nervous about the way things are going you can always ask to stop the interview.

The police are professionals who have been trained to interrogate people. They set the environment. They can lie to you and trick you. They don’t have to tell you why they are talking to you.

You don’t have to talk to them; can ask for professional help; and can stop them any time you want.

What should you do if the police want to talk to you?

The police can sometimes make an arrest on the spot if they personally witness you commit a crime or otherwise have probable cause to believe you did so. Most of the time there will be some sort of investigation into the allegations before the police seek an arrest warrant. This can include gathering physical evidence as well as speaking with witnesses. If the police approach you as part of an investigation and ask for you to speak with them, you should never do so without first speaking with a defense attorney.

Even if the police tell you that you are not a suspect and you are certain that you have nothing to hide, you should not speak to the police without an attorney present, as the police frequently twist even innocent words against you and use them against you in the future.