USA: I don’t answer questions what do you mean? One question that sometimes arises whether you have to talk to the cops if they stop you. The Supreme Court ruled that you can give your name upon request, but furthermore, no further information is needed.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent!
You probably saw that the scene played on police procedural dramas on television many times. A police officer shall inform a suspect about his rights, including the right to be silent and the right to an attorney. You can affirm your right to stay silent, and not answer any questions of the police officer beyond telling them your name if you are ever stopped by police, that if you haven’t committed any crime at the time the police officer is stopping you.
You may be informally asked by a police officer to come and talk to them. The only thing you have to say to find out if you committed a crime is “excuse me, officer? have I done something wrong?.” The police should explain why they stop you at this point, and then you can see whether you have any kind of trouble or not.
You can ask, ‘I can go my way?’ You can follow the question To help the police to stress that you do not want to talk to the police until you have committed any crimes.
Only provide basic information if you talk to the police freely.
You want to be brief and to the point of providing a police officer with any information. Do not try to voluntarily provide anything other than what is requested of you. Any falsehoods on your part (which the police officer can verify) ultimately leads to lies and arrests. While it is within your right to remain silent if you have committed no crime, the situation can sometimes be helpful if you provide basic information to the police officer. This may contain:
- Your name.
- Your address and the details of your current living situation (like who you live with).
- Your reason for being out and where you’re heading.
Let’s understand this with an example!
Do not talk to the police without your lawyer present and most good lawyers will not want you to talk to the police with or without a lawyer.
A lawyer shares his experience: I had been stopped by a qualified policeman many years ago, who stopped me allegedly because I had not stopped at a road light as the light changed from yellow to red. This kind of case is hard to prove — that I had a mini-second red light before I entered the cross-section.
By asking about a dozen questions, the officer sought my admission. It would have led to a conviction if I had been admitted. “Don’t reply to his questions and pretend that you don’t know why you’ve been stopped,” I continued saying.
When stopped because the officer is suspicious that you drank and now drive, do not answer the following questions the officer asked:
- Do you know why I stopped you? Remain silent.
- Do you know you were weaving? Remain silent.
- Do you know that you did not come to a complete stop? Remain silent.
- Do you know you violated ____ traffic law? Remain silent.
It is very difficult not to answer these direct questions, and both of you feel and think that the officer can not charge you if you cooperate in answering the questions. Fault — you will be convicted of part or all of the criminal charges 95 per cent of the time and your answers may result.
Understand that you are protected by the fifth amendment of the US Constitution by not answering the above or the like questions. You can not be forced upon yourself to testify.
The officer will ask for your driver’s license and vehicle registration and you are required to provide that. Having provided those, you would not have to answer whether the vehicle you are driving belongs to you or to someone else because the name of the owner appears on the registration.
Don’t Lie to the Cops
You can just answer questions from a cop, from an innocent person to an inmate in a split second. But, when you talk to the police, the most dangerous thing you can do is lie to them. The very act of lying, if you’re not true to the policeman, is that you committed a crime, and it’s a reason to hold you back.
Finally, instead of giving them cause for arrest, it’s best to remain silent. Note that lying to a cop is very hard. If you lie to a normal citizen, they usually assume that you say the truth and do not ask questions to check the truthfulness of what you say. Lying to a cop is much more difficult since they are trained to deal with lies.
- Cops are generally sceptical about the truth being told by people.
- The police will sometimes have the opportunity to check the validity of your statements from confirmed witnesses.
- Cops are rude and authoritarian, as they are trained in this way. They also use psychological tactics that you can not detect when they ask you to try and discover more than you are ready to say because of their training.
- Sometimes, cops invade your own space or even poke your finger to intimidate you emotionally, so you can’t think clearly.
- Cops can check everything you tell them for time and resources. These might be your acquaintances’ addresses and telephone numbers and your criminal record. When people are pressured to lie, cops can also pressure people to escape and resist arrest. It is a different way for cops to turn a citizen into a prisoner.
When can you say “I don’t answer questions?”
Being stopped by the police is one of the nervous moments of all times. You never know if it will be a lucky “good day” or if it will be a big fine. The result is the latter more often than not. But he knows a phrase that will save your life, Kenny Suitter says.
In the case of a police officer during a traffic stop, Kenny Suitter is the first man to use this phrase, “I don’t answer questions.” In this video, Suitter announces the importance of knowing your law and how the police will respond to your replies. In his video, the key to knowing your Fifth Amendment rights is strategically preached.
The whole video shows a picture of the Constitution and a waving American flag in the background. Both together represent America’s liberty, justice and perseverance. Suitter also speaks with a proud voice that would allow the reader to feel the patriotism on the screen, like a voice one would use during debate. In combination, the background and voice create the sensation that the audience is watching a presidential debate.
On a badge, he brands a phrase like the way a police officer could brand his title to a badge “I don’t answer questions.” Just as the Police Officer approached Suitter’s car holding a badge, Suitter metaphorically held his badge, saying, “I do not answer questions.” That goes against the right of police officers who feel they should always be answered regardless of what happens. Finally, Suitter says in the video “Don’t be stupid, keep your mouth shut and do not put your foot in your mouth.” The audience can find out how “stupid” it would look to the police officer to answer questions with this kind of language.
After looking at this video, the audience should know that, by simply knowing your rights, you are in a situation that you can easily avoid.
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