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JUST FIND YOUR ANSWERS BELOW:
AIra and the attorneys at Whitlock Law Office, LLC cannot promise you a certain outcome to your case and legal issue. However, Ira and the attorneys at Whitlock Law Office will aggressively use all legal means available under the law to win your case and seek the most positive outcome to your case. Ira has practiced for over 22 years and has had great success on every level – from murder down to traffic cases. Ira’s experience as a trial lawyer as well as his work for Judge Mott prior to his practice has given him the ability to handle the most serious cases and maneuver the legal landscape to benefit his clients.
Will Mr. Whitlock and WLO fight to protect my legal rights under the law?
AIn order to protect yourself and your legal rights you should cooperate with the police, even if you feel the police are acting improperly or are simply wrong. You need to understand the police power in our legal system. The police are given the authority to investigate crimes and other legal issues, to arrest or issue summons, and to protect and serve the public interest. All of these concepts give great initial powers to the police. However, our system of jurisprudence (legal system) does provide citizens/clients checks and balances on police power and authority. You have a constitutional right to hire an attorney to challenge the police action and any case they build against you. Your initial cooperation protects YOUR LIFE, but it also protects and preserves your future legal challenges. Your retaliation and/or challenge to the police action might lead to resisting arrest charges, which can be prosecuted even if the police initially acted improperly. PLEASE BE SAFE. GET HOME and live to fight another day!
What should I do if I am stopped by the police?
ANo. The police cannot enter and/or search your home without a warrant. The police need a search warrant to enter and/or search your home. You have a right to see the warrant, although the law does allow them to show you the warrant and provide you with the warrant receipt after they execute the warrant. The police cannot enter and/or search your home with only an arrest warrant. However, they will often intimidate citizens into allowing them to enter their home with the arrest warrant because of threats the police commonly use, including but limited to the number of officers present at the time of their request. The police can arrest an individual they have probable cause or an arrest warrant to arrest, if that person is in a public place. Again, they need a search warrant to enter and/or search your home. Please note the police have an exception to these general rules of law when they have something called “exigent circumstances.” Exigent circumstances generally means an emergency. If the police are chasing you or an individual who runs/flees into your home, the police can enter your home without a warrant in pursuit of you or the individual. Along the same lines, if the police receive a 911 call associated with your home, they can enter and/or search your home due to exigent circumstance and to protect the public interest.
Can the police enter and/or search my home without a warrant?
ANo. You do not have to answer police questions during an interrogation or at any other time. You have a right to remain silent whether you are a witness or a potential/actual defendant. A witness can be subpoenaed and force to testify in court, if it is believed they have relevant information concerning a case. However, the court, government, nor prosecutor can make you testify a certain way. The court can force a witness to testify by granting the witness immunity and using the contempt power of the court. However, a potential/actual defendant cannot be forced to testify against himself/herself due to his/her Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. As such, a defendant does not have to answer any police questions and cannot be forced to testify in his/her own case. Please keep in mind you have the right to speak with an attorney and/or have an attorney present with you prior to answering questions of the police. However, the police can ask basic questions during a traffic stop such as your name, address, date of birth, insurance and title information for the vehicle being stopped without allowing you time to speak to an attorney.
Do I have to answer police questions?
AThe police are required to read you your Miranda rights if you are in custody and being interrogated. Many people believe the police are always required to read them their Miranda rights upon contact with the police. As noted, that is not correct. The phrase “in custody” means you are officially under arrest or detained for a period of time that equates to an arrest. The term “interrogation” means the police are asking you questions about the alleged crime, which does not include basic questions like your name, address and date of birth. Please keep in mind you have the right to speak with an attorney and/or have an attorney present with you prior to answering questions of the police.
When do the police have to read me my Miranda rights?