Houston Criminal Law Blog

EXPERIENCED. AGGRESSIVE. HOUSTON CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAW FIRM: The Law Office of Matthew D. Sharp

How to Keep Your Cool When Speaking with the Police

 

Staying Calm When Dealing With Police

Nearly anyone who drives on Texas highways might end up getting pulled over at some point. Whether it’s a broken taillight or a forgotten turn signal, even safe and responsible drivers might notice blue and red lights in their rear-view mirror one day. When this happens, it’s important to behave in a certain way to prevent the situation from becoming serious.

While it might be tempting to try to talk an officer out of writing a ticket, remember that legal battles are fought in the courtroom, not on the side of a highway. Doing or saying the wrong thing can escalate the situation and might lead to handcuffs and a ride to the county jail.

The same logic applies to police interrogations. Knowing how to behave in these situations can help a person make a smart choice.

You’re Getting Pulled Over, Now What?

When drivers see police lights behind them, it’s time to act quickly. They should quickly but safely pull over to the right shoulder of the road as soon as possible. If there is no safe place to pull over, it’s okay to pull into a better spot if there is one close by. However, the first thing to do is to slow down, pull over, and activate a turn signal so that the officer knows that the driver is complying.

Once the driver is safely pulled over, it’s time to take a deep breath and stay calm. Next, put the car in park, turn the car off and roll the driver’s side window down completely. Place both hands on the steering wheel and turn on the interior light if it’s dark outside.

Don’t reach for a driver’s license and proof of insurance until the officer asks for them. An officer approaching a car who sees a driver digging through the glove box might get suspicious. Follow all of the officer’s instructions and speak in a courteous and respectful tone.

Speaking To The Police

It’s one thing to talk to the police on the side of the road but it’s a different matter to talk to them in an interrogation room. Just like the advice for traffic stops, it’s important to stay calm when talking to the police.

It’s normal to be nervous in an interrogation. After all, being in a small room with armed officers who are asking tough questions can make anybody uneasy. However, it’s important to remember that citizens have rights in these scenarios. These include:

  • The right to legal counsel
  • The right to remain silent

If a person is taken into an interrogation room for questioning, the only thing they should say is “I would like to speak to my attorney, please.” Trying to argue or outsmart law enforcement officers will not work and will probably make things worse. Anything that a person says in custody can be used against them in court. The best course of action is to request a lawyer and then remain silent until the lawyer arrives.

Using An Attorney

Once the attorney arrives, it’s okay to discuss the case with him or her. They may encourage an arrested person to give a statement or to continue remaining silent. The thing to remember is that the law enforcement officer have the odds stacked in their favor. It is their job to get suspects to confess to crimes and they get to practice this skill on a daily basis.

An attorney is like a shield between the police and a person that they have arrested. While an attorney may not be able to prevent charges from being filed, they may be able to help a suspect create a solid legal defense to fight those charges in court.


Have you been arrested recently? Time is of the essence when charged with a crime. Contact The Law Office of Matthew D. Sharp to get the strong legal defense necessary to protect yourself. Call today at (713) 868-6100.

Comments (no responses)

Comments are closed.