What to do if you are arrested
Unfortunately, there are times when a person becomes involved in a situation that leads to his/her arrest. If you are ever arrested, it is extremely important you follow these few simple instructions which will help you protect your rights.
- If you are arrested, call your attorney. It is important to obtain representation immediately.
- Remain silent. Other than providing the arresting agency with your name, phone number, address and other pedigree information, DO NOT discuss the facts of the case at all with the arresting officer. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court. Statements should never be made without an attorney present.
- If you are arrested, it is best to remain calm, cool and collected. The quicker the arresting agency can finish the necessary paperwork, the quicker you will be able to be released from custody. The appropriate place to challenge the legality of your arrest is in a court, not at the police precinct, and the sooner you get in front of a judge the better.
- If you are arrested and the arresting agency does not read you your Miranda warnings, that does not mean the case must be dismissed. The only time Miranda warnings must be read is if the arresting agency is attempting to ask you questions or attempting to interrogate you while you are in custody. If the arresting agency does not seek to question you, Miranda warnings are not required.
- After being arrested, you will be brought to the police precinct and remain there until all paperwork is processed. If eligible, you may receive a Desk Appearance Ticket and be released from the precinct, otherwise, you will be held for arraignment.
- After all paperwork is completed, you will be brought to Central Booking and remain there until the arraignment. Prior to the arraignment, a representative of the Criminal Justice Agency will interview you to verify your address, phone number, employment history and educational background. This information is used by the court to help determine whether or not bail will be set.
After all of the above-steps are completed, you will appear before the court for an arraignment. An arraignment is a two-step legal proceeding. First, you are formally informed of the charges in open court. Second, a judge determines whether or not bail should be set. If you have not yet retained an attorney, the court will appoint an attorney for the arraignment, and depending upon your financial circumstances, you may be ordered to retain an attorney by the next court appearance.