What to do When Arrested in Illinois?

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What to do When Arrested in Illinois?
In an arrest, a police officer, state trooper, or sheriff restrains your freedom of movement. The arresting officer may take you into custody, or you may be stopped, verbally or physically, for questioning about a crime. At the time of your arrest, the arresting officers should inform you they have a warrant and produce the warrant for your review. If they have criminally charged you, ask the nature of the criminal charges.

-Things to Remember While Being Arrested:

1. If you have been arrested, and answer questions about your identification-such as name, address, and birth date. Answer these questions truthfully. If you are walking in a public place in Illinois: if a police officer asks you to identify yourself, you cannot be arrested for refusing to answer, but you can be arrested for giving a false answer. If you wish to remain silent, tell the officer out loud. If you do talk to the police, do not lie: lying to the police is a crime.

2. Stay calm. Don’t run. Don’t argue, resist, or obstruct the police, even if you are innocent. Keep your hands where police can see them. Ask if you are free to leave. If the officer says yes, calmly and silently walk away. If you are under arrest, you have a right to know why.

3. You do not have to consent to a search of yourself or your belongings, but police may “pat down” your clothing if they reasonably suspect that you possess a weapon. You should not physically resist, but you have the right to refuse consent for any further search. If you do consent, it can affect you later in court.

4. You have the right to remain silent and cannot be punished for refusing to answer the officer’s questions. Do not answer any questions without your criminal defense attorney present; simply explain you will answer questions once your attorney is present. Anything you say to the officers can and may be used against you in court. It is not enough to state, “I think I should have a criminal lawyer present” or “do I need a criminal lawyer”?. You must clearly request in the affirmative: “I want a criminal defense attorney present before I answer any questions”. After requesting an attorney before answering questions, any and all questioning must stop.

5. People often think if they answer questions and tell their side then everything will be explained away and they will be released. This is almost never the case. Unfortunately, the police officers may strongly believe they have the right person or that anything you say is a lie. Do not give any explanations or excuses. If you can’t pay for a lawyer, you have the right to a free attorney, unless a fine is the only penalty for the crimes you are accused of committing. Don’t say anything, sign anything, or make any decisions without a lawyer.
6. You have the right to make a local phone call. However, you should not talk about the facts of your case over the phone from jail: these phone calls are recorded, and may be used against you in court.

7. If you are a non-citizen, ask your lawyer about the effect of a criminal conviction or plea on your immigration status. Don’t discuss your immigration status with anyone but your lawyer. If an immigration agent visits you in jail, do not answer questions or sign anything before talking to a lawyer.

8. Try to learn and remember the names and badge numbers of all police officers involved in your arrest. Also, try to remember all the details of your arrest, and write them down as soon as possible. If you are injured, seek medical attention immediately, photograph your injuries, and obtain a copy of all treatment records.

For more information visit www.quintanalawgroup.com

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