What Should You Do When Arrested Attorney Brad H Ferguson
Picture of Brad H. Ferguson

Brad H. Ferguson

Attorney at Law
Criminal Defense | Family Law | Personal Injury Lawyer

What should you do if you are arrested?

What should you do if you are arrested? Being stopped by law enforcement can be an unsettling experience that may lead to an arrest. On average, there are over 10 million arrests made in the United States each year. Not all of them end in punishment from the judicial system, though. That is why it is crucial to keep yourself calm and rational if you are arrested. Here are a few things to remember in the unlikely event you find yourself in this situation.

Identify Yourself

If you are stopped by a police officer or other law enforcement, they may ask you to identify yourself.  Go ahead and provide the information requested. If you choose to not tell them who you are, you could be denied bail and be kept in custody until your trial.

Do Not Resist Arrest

As stated, an arrest does not mean that you are guilty; it is the due process of the judicial system to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. By law, you cannot resist a lawful arrest.  

Resisting arrest only results in complicating your case, and it is a criminal offense. Even if you are acquitted in court, you can still be found guilty of resisting arrest separately and have to face the consequences.

Do Ask for a Copy of the Arrest Warrant

If an officer comes to arrest you, they should have a copy of the warrant to be served. You have the right to request it and know what you are being charged with.

There are events where you can be arrested without a warrant. Nevertheless, you should still ask what you are being charged with.

Before you leave the police station, be sure that you have your warrant because it will contain information about your upcoming court date and information your attorney will need to properly assist you.

Do Not Make Any Statements to the Police Until you Speak to a Lawyer

If you are being arrested, you have the right to remain silent. Police officers cite the “Miranda Rights “ before you are placed in custody; exercise your right.

When we are faced with adversity, our natural impulse is to share our side of the story. It is important to resist the temptation to defend yourself because you may inadvertently implicate yourself in a crime.

You may feel that remaining silent gives the impression that you are guilty or have something to hide. Exercising your right to not speak is your constitutional right, and you should not feel guilty about using it.

The police may try to question you, but all you have to do is request to speak to a lawyer before making any comments. Once you have made this request, you will be allowed to call an attorney. If you do not have an attorney, one will be appointed to you by the court. Waiting for appointed legal counsel may take a little time. In the meantime, do not make any further statements to the police.

Call a Relative, Friend, or Lawyer to Assist in Securing Your Bail

In most cases, you will probably be released on bail until your trial. This is otherwise known as “putting up bond” or “making bail.” The money you pay for bail is a way for the court system to ensure that you attend your court hearing. After you appear in court and do all that the judge asks of you, your bail money will be returned.

Not everyone will have to pay to be released on bail. Instead, you may be released by signing a recognizance bond. A recognizance bond is a written promise to appear at your hearing.

If you are told that you have to put up cash to secure your release, but you do not have it, you may hire a bondsman to post the bond for you. You may also request that your bond be put up by a friend or relative.

Obey All Conditions of Your Bond

A bond is a conditional release, and you should follow all conditions that have been requested of you. Your terms, for example, may be to abstain from alcohol, stay away from specific individuals or property until your trial.  If you violate your terms of release, your bond can be revoked, and you will have to wait for your trial date in jail.

Being arrested can be an upsetting experience but remember you have rights, and you can use them. It is always in your best interest to wait until you speak to an attorney about your situation. In the meantime, be cooperative and obey all the conditions of your release.

If you need legal representation or know someone who does, don’t hesitate to contact Waynesville, NC Attorney Brad Ferguson.

Share this post

Legal Disclaimer: The information provided on this site does not constitute a lawyer-client relationship and is for general informational purposes only. Attorney Brad H. Ferguson has not been involved in any cases mentioned on this blog. Content provided does not constitute legal advice and may not represent the most up-to-date information. No reader of this site should act or refrain according to the information given without first seeking legal counsel in their jurisdiction. If you have a pressing legal matter that needs attention, please contact our office via phone to schedule a consultation at 828-452-1655.