Many people think they are
helping themselves when they speak with police and answer police
questions. In my opinion, it is almost never a good idea to
speak with police, especially when you know you may be suspected
of a crime.
Invoking your right to remain
silent CANNOT be used against you in court; it is strictly
forbidden to even be mentioned to a jury.
If you are already under
arrest, the police officer has already formed the belief that
you are guilty. Do you think your comments will change his mind?
Even innocent comments can be construed as admissions of guilt.
Denials are considered by police to be dishonesty and will NOT
result in your release.
Think about it. Why would
police question a criminal suspect? Police take time to question
and gather evidence because it is helpful to the case against
the suspect, not for him. When a case is weak, police often hope
the suspect's statement will be the missing link to a
conviction; they are often correct, regardless of whether the
suspect is truly guilty.
Many very defendable cases have
been lost simply because the suspects made incriminating
statements in the erroneous belief it would help them. Think
about it: if you have been arrested, the police think you did
something wrong. Would their questioning be geared to help you
or hurt you? Police do NOT want to help suspects, unless one
considers convictions "help".
If you are not already
convinced that speaking with police is a bad idea, consider the
fact that courts routinely state that it is perfectly legal for
police to lie and mislead suspects in order to coerce
confessions. A confession in a recent death penalty case in El
Paso was upheld despite the officers' lies to the suspect that
his family was being tortured.
Generally, a person's best bet
is to invoke his right to remain silent and immediately seek the
assistance of a competent criminal defense attorney, regardless
of whether the person is guilty or innocent, and regardless of
what evidence the police supposedly have.
to Criminal Defense Main Page--->
are for people 21 years or older, do not involve enhancements,
are not exclusive, and are limited to Texas.
**This page is for
informational purposes ONLY and must not be relied upon as legal
advice because it is NOT a substitute for the advice of a qualified
attorney, nor does it establish an attorney-client
Not certified by the Texas
Board of Legal Specialization.