Being stopped by police can be a particularly stressful experience. Innocents every day are misled and duped into incriminating themselves by prying law enforcement officers. Many are imprisoned and/or harmed merely because they chose to answer questions asked by law enforcement.
Knowing how to assert your rights can prevent you from being unlawfully kidnapped or caged.
Because of the SCOTUS ruling in Salinas v. Texas, you are now expected to know that you have a right against self-incrimination, and unless you specifically and clearly invoke this right, anything you say or do not say, including your mannerisms at the time you stop talking, can be used against you. You actually have to say, “I do not answer questions.”
Don’t concern yourself with what kind of interrogation you’re in. Don’t worry about whether Salinas applies in your particular situation. Just invoke your 5th Amendment right immediately, verbally, and clearly.
Memorizing laws and and statutes can go a long way, however, having a business card handy, that states your rights for you, is much more convenient, especially when under the stress of a police stop.
Here is a good example of a detailed card one can carry around:
“I hereby invoke and refuse to waive all of the following rights and privileges afforded to me by the United States Constitution. I invoke and refuse to waive my 5th Amendment right to Remain Silent. I invoke and refuse to waive my 6th Amendment right to an attorney of my choice. I invoke and refuse to waive my 4th Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. If I am not presently under arrest, or under investigatory detention, please allow me to leave.”
“Officer, I Assert My Fifth Amendment Rights As Stated On This Card. Pursuant to the law, as established by the United States Supreme Court, my lawyer has advised me not to talk to anyone and not to answer questions about any pending criminal case or any other civil, administrative, judicial, investigatory or adjudicatory matter. Following his advice, I do not wish to talk to anyone about any criminal, civil, administrative, judicial, investigatory or adjudicatory matter, without my lawyer present. I waive no legal rights, nor give any consents, nor submit to any tests or other procedures, without my lawyer present. I ask that no one question or talk to me, without my lawyer here to advise me.
If you’d like a downloadable version of this card you can download it here.
Below is a video which shows the effectiveness of knowing and stating your rights:
remix of original post by Free Thought Project.
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