Know Your Rights In A Tampa Traffic Stop
Recently an 18 year old social media star was apprehended and arrested by Pasco County police after leading them on a high speed chase, at times exceeding 100 mph in residential zones. After being detained, the defendant indicated that he made a lot of money, and thought he could get away without apprehension if he drove fast enough.
He also told deputies that he changed his mind about continuing on the freeway because he might have gotten in more trouble. The defendant made these statements willingly even after being read his Miranda rights. Unfortunately, these statements could be interpreted as self-incriminating. What should you do if you are pulled over in a traffic stop?
Right to Remain Silent
If you have been detained in a Tampa traffic stop, you have the right to remain silent. You only have a duty to provide identifying information such as your name and birthday or to allow them to examine your driver’s license and registration. Beyond that, you are under no obligation to answer additional questions.
You can state your right to remain silent (part of Miranda rights) at any time, even before it is read to you or before you are cuffed and transported to a holding facility. Anything you say can be held against you or used by a state’s attorney to determine if they can prosecute you for additional charges. Even if you think providing justification or rationale for why you were speeding, evading police, recklessly driving, etc. might help you, it is often in your best interest to remain silent.
Right to Request an Attorney be Present
If you are taken into police custody, you have a right to request an attorney be present during interrogation and prior to arraignment, as well as at any court proceeding against you. Many defendants unfortunately do not make use of this right and could be interrogated for multiple hours by several investigators or detectives until they “crack” under the pressure. It is also not unheard of for an innocent defendant to confess to something they did not do only to avoid additional questioning and interrogation, which can be brutal. Do not answer any questions without the presence of a licensed criminal defense attorney. Invoke your Miranda right to have an attorney present during questioning.
Contact Tampa Traffic Offense Attorney Bryant Scriven
If a family member has been arrested and you were just informed, your next call should be to Tampa criminal lawyer Bryant Scriven. Attorney Scriven is dedicated to advocating for all of his clients, no matter how dire the circumstances.