Tag Archives: Fifth Amendment rights

St. Charles traffic violations defense attorney

If a law enforcement officer suspects that a motorist is breaking the law, he or she will use lights and sirens to indicate that the driver must pull over for a traffic stop. If the police officer suspects the driver of driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol, he or she may ask the driver to participate in a field sobriety test or take a breathalyzer test. If the officer suspects that weapons, illegal drugs, or other contraband are in the vehicle, he or she may conduct a search of the vehicle. There are certain things that a driver should never do during a traffic stop as well as steps that drivers should always take. It is important to remember that you have certain rights during traffic stops, and doing the following may help you avoid criminal charges:

Pull Over Immediately

Being pulled over by a police officer is often the last thing you want to deal with. However, traffic stops are not optional. The Illinois Vehicle Code states that if a driver receives a “visual or audible signal” by a police officer to stop his or her vehicle and fails to do so, he or she may be charged with fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer. This offense is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail.

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St. Charles criminal defense lawyer rightsExcept for in certain cases where there is probable cause to believe you committed a crime, you cannot be arrested until the police have a valid warrant for your arrest. This does not mean you will not interact with law enforcement before being arrested – you likely will. And during these interactions, there will be numerous opportunities for you to incriminate yourself. Successful criminal defense depends largely on avoiding self-incrimination. Keep the following tips in mind during your law enforcement interactions to avoid incriminating yourself.

Do Not Speak with Law Enforcement

If you remember nothing else about avoiding incrimination during your initial interaction with law enforcement, remember this: you have the right to remain silent. There are a few circumstances under which you are required to identify yourself to police. They are:

  • If you are stopped while driving a car, you must show your driver’s license; and
  • If you are in a public space, and law enforcement has reason to believe you were involved in a crime, they may ask you to identify yourself. If the officers have identified themselves as police officers in this circumstance, you must comply with their request.

Beyond identifying yourself, you are not required to answer any questions.

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commit a crime, Illinois criminal defense attorney, law enforcement interrogrations, Miranda Rights, police interrogation, probable cause hearings, right to counsel, Fifth Amendment rights, Sixth Amendment rightsIt has happened. You have been arrested and are being interrogated by the police. What do you do? Should you say anything? Do you have to answer the questions asked by the police? How do you ask to speak to your lawyer?

Under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments of the United States Constitution, you have the right to have an attorney present at an interrogation conducted by police.

However, many people are not sure how they are supposed to invoke their right to counsel and end up saying the wrong thing, which enables the police to continue the interrogation without your attorney present.

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