How to act in case of being arrested?
What to do if a police officer stops you in your vehicle?
» If the officer so requests, give them your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance for the vehicle.
» Do not disclose your country of origin or reveal your immigration status.
» If you receive a ticket, sign it.
» You are not required to allow your vehicle to be searched unless officers have an order signed by a judge to prove them. If the police insist on checking your vehicle, ask to see this document.
» Remember the badge number of the arresting officer. As soon as possible, write it down.
What to do if you are arrested?
» Ask if you are under arrest. If this is the case, you have the right to know the reason.
» Provide only your name and address when requested. Do not answer other questions or offer explanations to detaining officers.
» You have the right to remain silent and it is advisable to do so. If you decide not to exercise that right, anything you say can be used against you.
» Get a lawyer right away. They should answer any question the officers ask. Do not say anything if your lawyer is not present. Do not make decisions about your case without consulting them.
What to do if immigration officers come to your home?
» Keep calm. You can make better decisions if you try to be calm.
» If the police knock on your door, do not open it. No officer can enter your home without an order signed by a judge. Have them pass that document to you under the door. Examine it carefully. It should state which areas can be searched. Verify that it is signed.
» Do not answer questions or offer explanations to officers. Request an attorney immediately. Then, officers may only enter your home once your lawyer is present.
» Within your home, officers may carry out only the actions listed in the order. They should not look elsewhere or request personal documents.
» Everyone, including children, has the right to respectful treatment from the police.
» Make a brief note of the names, badge numbers, and descriptions of the officers that searched in your home.
In any case
» Do not try to run away
» Treat officers with respect. You could be arrested if you do not.
» Do not lie. Lying to an officer
is a felony.
» Record all the interaction with the officers using your cell phone.
» If the officers do not behave as described above, or if you feel your rights have been violated, file a complaint with the ACLU or through your attorney.
Sol de Medianoche will continue to provide information to the Latino community on issues of immigration, rights and other concerns.
The information published in this article has been obtained from: Robin Bronen of Alaska Institute for Justice, Joshua Decker of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and Nicolás Olano of Nations Law Group.