Frequently Asked Question
Do I have to give law enforcement consent to search anything?
Never. Do not give consent, but if they are going to search, do not prevent, forbid or obstruct the search.
Does law enforcement have a right to stop and search me?
There are different types of contact with the police. They have a right to conduct a "safety" frisk for weapons.
What should I do if the police stop me and suspect me of operating a vehicle while intoxicated?
1) Be respectful and polite.
2) Do not submit to any field sobriety tests except for a hand-held alcohol instrument. (commonly called a preliminary breath test or PBT)
3)Do not talk about where you were, how much you had to drink or when you drank it.
4)Request an independent blood-alcohol test at a hospital.
Do I have to talk to law enforcement?
No, the Miranda Rights, commonly seen in movies and television--the right to remain silent, anything you have to say can be used against you-- are not required for a casual non-custodial(non-arrest) conversation. However, you still have these rights. Anything you say to a law-enforcement officer will be used against you. Further, they may easily mistake something you say or take it out of context which will certainly become damaging later.
What is the difference between a misdemeanor and felony?
A misdemeanor crime is punishable up to one year in county jail and trials are held in the state's lower court, or Municipal Court. A felony crime is punishable by one year or more in state prison or penitentiary. Felonies begin in the state's lower court system but may move up to the state Superior Court, or higher court.
When should I hire an attorney?
Early intervention is key and there is no substitute for hiring a knowledgable defense attorney to help you navigate the legal process.