How to Avoid Incriminating Yourself
There’s no such thing as a friendly interrogation by the police. If you’ve been accused of a crime or your name has come up in an investigation, you have the responsibility to make sure that you don’t incriminate yourself. Below are a handful of ways to avoid doing so when speaking with the police.
Don’t Volunteer Information
The best way to avoid incriminating yourself is to stick to the questions that you are asked by the police. Don’t go out of your way to volunteer more information about your situation, even when you think that doing so will make you look better to the police. Instead, stick solely to those topics about which you are asked.
Stay Off of Social Media
Your next step is to make sure that there’s as little to use against you as possible. If you know that you are going to go in to talk to the police, it’s time to let your social media accounts go quiet. Even an innocuous post can lead to further investigations, so shut everything down for the course of the investigation. If you absolutely must use social media, refrain from talking about anything related to the incidents about which you are being questioned.
It’s vital that you don’t lie when you are being questioned. This doesn’t mean that you have to voluntarily offer up every piece of information that you have, but rather that you should never make up a story. Even those who are innocent can fall afoul of the law when the police find out that they’ve made something up during questioning. If you don’t know an answer, say that. If you don’t want to answer a question, tell the police.
Don’t Speak Without a Lawyer
If you are questioned by the police, contact a lawyer as soon as possible. You have a right to an attorney any time you are questioned, but you have to invoke that right. While it may take time to get a lawyer to you and the police may act like they just want to help, the truth is that a good lawyer will always be your best defense. Remember, a lawyer knows your rights better than either you or the police.
It’s always best to be careful when you’re being questioned. Regardless of your innocence, it is up to you to proactively protect your rights in situations that could lead to your arrest or conviction. Make sure that you don’t volunteer information, that you refrain from posting on social media, that you avoid making stories up, and that you work with a criminal defense attorney in PA. Doing so may mean the difference between freedom and jail time.