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What To Do When You Get Arrested

What To Do When You Get Arrested

No one ever plans to get in trouble with the law, but the fact is, people do get arrested in Northwest Arkansas every day. Most people don’t expect to find themselves in this situation, so very few people are mentally prepared for that possibility. It may be a case of “wrong place, wrong time” or a simple misunderstanding. But because most don’t know what to do when you get arrested, we see people make a lot of the same mistakes. Here are the most important things to remember:

1. Be respectful and cooperate with law enforcement.

Don’t run. Don’t be argumentative or combative. Do not do anything that could be seen as threatening. Any of these things could result in additional charges and ultimately hurt your case.

Prosecutors often consult with law enforcement officers before making an offer. Panicking and making the police chase you through the woods will make it difficult for the prosecutor to make you a favorable offer.

2. Don’t say anything until you’ve talked with your lawyer.

Anything you say can and will be used against you. Law enforcement officers are very experienced in interrogating witnesses. They are very good at making you think that it is in your best interest to tell them everything you know. Even when you know you have done nothing legally wrong, do not answer any questions or share any information without talking with a lawyer. This can lead you to unintentionally make incriminating statements that you can’t take back.

3. Ask to be allowed to call your attorney.

If you cannot afford one, ask an officer or judge that an attorney be appointed to represent you. You are entitled to legal representation, regardless of your financial situation. 

4. Work with an attorney that is experienced in criminal law.

Criminal law can be complicated. It is a very specialized area, and it’s important that you have an attorney on your side who is experienced in that area. Experienced criminal attorneys in Northwest Arkansas likely have established positive relationships with the court and local law enforcement, and that may work in your favor.

5. Do not talk about your case to ANYONE other than your lawyer.

This includes anyone you are in jail with. You might think it’s common sense, but it’s human nature to vent about a bad situation. You might feel inclined to justify or defend yourself to a sympathetic audience. However, it is very common for a cellmate to pass information on to officers or the prosecutor to try to gain favor with the court. Keep in mind that anything you say can and will be used against you.

6. Don’t try to talk yourself out of your arrest.

When you’re under arrest, you’re under arrest. You can’t talk yourself out of it, and in trying to do so, you might overshare details that can hurt you in court. Do not try to negotiate with law enforcement or make an agreement with anyone until you have consulted with your lawyer. Law enforcement officers can make recommendations to the prosecutor, but only the prosecutor can make an agreement. Even then, any agreement you make is subject to court approval.

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Fayetteville Law Office

(479) 935-8313

909 Rolling Hills Dr.
Fayetteville, AR 72703

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(479) 935-8060

4 Village Loop
Booneville, AR 72927


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