Being arrested is a frightening experience. Guilty or innocent, the process of being removed from your home, booked and stuck in a jail cell is extremely stressful. The seriousness of the issue is compounded when you are unsure of what to do next. It is important to take several considerations into account during and immediately after your arrest in order to obtain the best possible outcome.
What to Do During an Arrest
Being arrested is a high adrenalin situation. It is natural to want to fight or flee the scene. Do not do either, under any circumstances. Cooperate fully with any instruction law enforcement gives. Do not admit guilt or attempt to proclaim innocence. This is not the time for anger or emotion. Do your best to remain as calm and collected as possible. Attempting to elude police or engaging in combative behavior during the arrest will be noted, and additional charges can be brought against you for your actions during an arrest.
What to Do During Processing and Booking
After an arrest, you will be transported to the nearest county jail facility. Once there, you will be required to give certain personal information to jailors. Give the information you are asked for as politely as possible without volunteering any additional facts. Again, do not admit guilt even if you are guilty. Fingerprints and a booking photograph will be taken. After processing and booking, you may or may not be interviewed by authorities. You have the right to remain silent, and you should use it. The moment you request a lawyer, authorities are no longer permitted to speak to you regarding the case until an attorney is present. Request the lawyer immediately.
What to Do in Jail
Once you are put in a cell, it is important to remain quiet about the details of your case. It may be tempting to discuss your circumstances with a cellmate who may seem to offer a sympathetic ear. Don’t. Often, testimony from cellmates plays an integral role in an eventual conviction. Be polite but distant with everyone you come into contact with. Remember, you are always being watched and everything you do from the moment of your arrest is fair game for a trial. If you can secure bail, do it. You will be much more available to plan your defense if you are free.
Being arrested is highly undesirable, but when it happens it is important to know what to do next. Do not admit guilt or plead innocence, ask for a lawyer immediately and attempt to secure bail as soon as possible. Knowing what to do during and immediately after an arrest can make a huge difference in the eventual outcome of your case.