Here at the O’Malley Law Office, we are often asked whether or not it is good to talk to the police. In our experience as criminal defense attorneys, we respond with an emphatic “no.” It is much better to exercise your right to remain silent, and not give a statement to the police. To explain exactly what we mean, let one of our attorneys, Kyle Sawyer, give you an example of a recent case.
Is it Good to Talk to the Police? An Example
One day, I was in court and he saw a man going through the security at the courthouse. His bags were being checked by the police as he went through. As I walked by, I thought to himself: “Don’t say a word. Don’t say anything.” Unfortunately, he hadn’t consulted a criminal defense lawyer and didn’t understand the importance of remaining silent when talking to the police. As the police checked his bags, the man began apologizing profusely for bringing certain things into the courthouse. During this apology, he explained:
1. Why he brought the item,
2. Why he didn’t think to leave it at home,
3. Why he should be in trouble for bringing the item to court.
Unfortunately, the man was cited for bringing an item to court that he should have brought. Most likely, he was cited because he talked too much – he gave the police more information, which harmed him in the end. He didn’t undestand that the things he was saying could get him into trouble.
Take Our Advice: Remain Silent
The general public doesn’t have a good grasp of the law. And, why should they? Criminal law is complex. So, people don’t know that what they say can be used against them. People don’t always take our advice to remain silent, so when they choose to speak, they get themselves into trouble. Take our advice – it comes from 40 years experience in the courtroom: Don’t talk to the police, it will only hurt your case in the end.