Most police officers are good people just trying to do their jobs. What you hear about on the news are the exceptions, the corrupt and abusive officer. What a person must remember is that an officer's job is to enforce laws and arrest lawbreakers. If you are suspected of a crime this puts you in a very tenuous position. What you do in a few quick moments can have a major impact on your life. Regardless of immigration status, every person in America has Constitutional rights.
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What to Do When the Police Get Involved

Call me as soon as possible. In the meantime:

1. Stay calm and polite. If you do not antagonize the police they are more likely to remain civil.

- Do NOT fight or run. Violence is often met with violence, plus if you do this they have no reason to give you the benefit of the doubt.

- The Police may violate your rights. These issues are never resolved on the street.  Do not resist, you will only risk greater injury. Remember names, badge numbers, witnesses, any details you can. This information will be crucial to your remedies.

- If you are driving slow down and pull over as soon as safely possible.

2. Give them the identifying information they ask for.

- Do NOT lie or give false documents.

- Do NOT obstruct their investigation.

3. If you are stopped for a traffic violation and they police have no other reason to talk to you they should write your ticket or warning and let you go.

4. If you are not under arrest you have the right to calmly leave.

-   Do NOT make yourself part of an investigation if you do not have to.

5. If they ask to search you, your car or your property; say "no." You do not have to let them search anything. If they need to search you that badly they can get a warrant.

- If you are arrested, they are allowed to search you. If your car is impounded they can do an inventory search of it.

6. If they suspect you of some other crime they will continue to question you.

7. You have a right to remain silent. At this point, it is a good idea to exercise this right. Many people think they can talk their way out of trouble, this usually backfires. Police are allowed to lie to you and trick you. If you wish to remain silent TELL them.

8. Tell them you will be happy to cooperate and answer questions if you can have a lawyer present. Once you are arrested you have the right to a lawyer for any questioning. Exercise it, ask for a lawyer immediately.

9. At some point you will be allowed a phone call. Use this to call a family member, friend or lawyer. Remember all phone calls and jail visits are recorded by the police.

10. After any encounter with law enforcement it is a good idea to write down what happened.

11.Get a lawyer. The criminal justice system is complicated. The police and District Attorneys are not there to help you. You need someone who's sole concern is you.

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Driving While Intoxicated?

If they suspect you of driving while intoxicated they will ask you to perform some tests.

-           The most common of these tests are Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. These standard field sobriety tests are designed for people to fail. You lose points for each mistake; there is no way to gain points. Unless you are sure you can pass, decline to take them. Many factors can negatively affect your performance on these tests from health problems to general clumsiness. Remember the cops are only doing this to collect evidence, not to help you.         

-           The police may also ask you to take a breath or a blood test. Again unless you are sure you can pass, decline to take them. With these test you run the additional risk of faulty equipment and laboratory errors. These errors are never in your favor.

-           If you decline any of the tests you will be arrested. No one wants to be arrested, ever. If you fail the tests you will also be arrested. If there is no way out of arrest it is better to not give them evidence to use against you.




The information contained in this web site is intended to convey general information about Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law. It should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. It is not an offer to represent you, nor is it intended to create an attorney-client relationship. Any email sent via the Internet to Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law, using email addresses listed in this web site would not be confidential and would not create an attorney-client relationship. Copyright © 2011 Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law, all rights reserved.

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Sarah Duncan defends people throughout North Texas including but not limited to people living in Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas, metro area, Addison, Balch Springs, Carrollton, Cedar Hill, Cockrell Hill, Combine, Coppell, Dallas, DeSoto, Duncanville, Farmers Branch, Garland, Grand Prairie, Glenn Heights, Highland Park, Hutchins, Irving, Lancaster, Mesquite, Richardson, Rowlett, Sachse, Seagoville, Sunnyvale, University Park, Wilmer, Arlington, Azle, Bedford, Benbrook, Bisbee, Blue Mound, Bransford, Castle Hill Estate, Colleyville, Crowley, Dalworthington Gardens, Eagle Mountain, Edgecliff Village, Euless, Everman, Forest Hill, Fort Worth, Garden Acres, Grapevine, Haltom City, Handley, Haslet, Hurst, Johnsons Station, Keller, Kennedale, Lake Worth, Lakeside, Lindberg, Lytle, Mansfield, Minters Chapel, North Richland Hills, Old Union, Pantego, Pecan Acres, Pelican Bay, Rendon, Richland Hills, River Oaks, Saginaw, Sansom Park, Smithfield, Southlake, Southland Acres, Sublett, Tarrant, Tate Springs, Watauga, Watsonville, Webb, Westlake, Westland, Westover Hills, Westworth, White Settlement, Plano, Denton, Rockwall, Waxahachie, Paris, Dallas County, Tarrant County, Collin County, Denton County, Rockwall County, Ellis County, Wise County, Kaufman County, Johnson County, Hood County, Parker County, DFW, Metroplex.