No matter what crime you are accused of, U.S. law affords individuals certain rights when they are arrested, questioned, and detained. Unfortunately, these rights are often violated by police officers whose interest isn’t to serve and protect but to get an arrest. Here’s what you need to know about your rights after being taken into police custody.
The Right To Know And Understand Your Criminal Charges
You must be informed of why you were arrested and what charges are being brought against you. You should be informed of the reason behind your arrest immediately, however, you may not learn about all the charges against you until your arraignment, when you are formally read your criminal charging document.
The Right to Know the Identity of Who Arrested You
Officers must identify themselves clearly as a police officer before arresting you. You also have the right to know the name and badge numbers of any police officers involved in your arrest or who were at the scene when you were arrested.
The Right to a Phone Call
You have the right to make a phone call to contact a bail bondsman, a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney, or a family member or friend to notify them of your arrest and request assistance or counsel.
The Right to Remain Silent
The right to remain silent is arguably the most well-known right. You do not have to answer any questions beyond providing your identification and in the case of a suspected DUI, submit to a chemical test. Any other questions do not require an answer, but officers may not necessarily let you know that when they begin to question you. In fact, many traffic stops start with a question designed to get the driver talking.
The Right to Legal Representation
You also have the right to be represented by an attorney of your choice, or if you do not have the money for a lawyer, one will be appointed to you by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Your attorney is allowed to be present during questioning and you have the right to communicate with your attorney in private regarding your case.
Contact Criminal Defense Attorney Thomas Kokonowski Now
Were you arrested for a crime? You need someone in your corner who can advocate for your rights and ensure that police follow the appropriate laws and procedures when investigating your case. Contact Attorney Kokonowski today to schedule a consultation at (413) 585-9200.