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Do you have to tell the arrestee what he's being arrested for?

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  • Do you have to tell the arrestee what he's being arrested for?

    OK, I've been watching COPS again. I've seen this many times... The person being arrested asks what he's being arrested for - what the charges are - and many times the officers just ignore him and don't answer.

    It seems to me the person has a right to know what he's being arrested for well before he ever gets in the police car. And it also seems that if you want the guy to be cooperative, answering his question would be one step in that direction.



  • #2
    Originally posted by the Chools
    OK, I've been watching COPS again. I've seen this many times... The person being arrested asks what he's being arrested for - what the charges are - and many times the officers just ignore him and don't answer.

    It seems to me the person has a right to know what he's being arrested for well before he ever gets in the police car. And it also seems that if you want the guy to be cooperative, answering his question would be one step in that direction.



    I have never in my career seen an officer arrest someone and refuse to tell the person what they are being arrested for.Now sometimes when the person is drunk they tend to forget what they have been arrested for and will ask the same question 100 times,and the officer tends to ignore them after the first 50 times of telling them what they have been arrested for.

    On a side note,remember,COPS is edited to show the interesting stuff.The person might have been told 10 times by the officer,but never got shown on TV.Don't use COPS as a tell all of how officers do their jobs.
    FILL YOUR HANDS!!!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by the Chools
      OK, I've been watching COPS again. I've seen this many times... The person being arrested asks what he's being arrested for - what the charges are - and many times the officers just ignore him and don't answer.

      It seems to me the person has a right to know what he's being arrested for well before he ever gets in the police car. And it also seems that if you want the guy to be cooperative, answering his question would be one step in that direction.


      You don't have the right to know why you are being arrested. It doesn't matter anyway, because you don't have the right to resist the arrest. There is a limitation on how long you can be held without charges however.

      From my experience, usually police officers always tell the arrestee what they are being arrested for. If they don't, it's because why should they bother talking to some blathering idiot who knows exactly what he is being arrested for and is just trying to start an argument. "I know my rights man!!!" lol

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      • #4
        Ditto Justice,

        I personally always tell them why they are being arrested, Once, maybe twice at best. I don't have to, but I do. Now, by that, in no way shape or form am I going to get into a "discussion" as to whether those charges are true or false, if I "he didn't do that" blah blah blah. Your under arrest and YES, 99.9% of the time they know exactly what for. I pull the guy out of a stolen vehicle after a pursuit, I'm pretty sure he doesn't hink he's under arrest for fraud.

        They are just looking for the argument, that's what you see on COPS. Makes for good TV.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by justice12
          You don't have the right to know why you are being arrested.
          I can't say that about my state:

          PC 841. The person making the arrest must inform the person to be
          arrested of the intention to arrest him, of the cause of the arrest,
          and the authority to make it, except when the person making the
          arrest has reasonable cause to believe that the person to be arrested
          is actually engaged in the commission of or an attempt to commit an
          offense, or the person to be arrested is pursued immediately after
          its commission, or after an escape.

          The person making the arrest must, on request of the person he is
          arresting, inform the latter of the offense for which he is being
          arrested.
          Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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          • #6
            I always tell them why they're arrested...or at least one of the charges I'm taking them to jail on. For example, I might arrest them for traffic violations and tell them that's all, but I know he's really going to get jammed on a felony charge the detectives want to talk to him about once he's booked. Or if I think he (or she for that matter) is going to twist off or run and I really don't feel like ruining a clean uniform and filling out use of force forms, I'll tell them the minor charge and worry about the other ones in the secure confines of the jail. The only right the arrestee has is the one to remain silent.

            Agree with the previous posts. COPS is a great show to give you a glimpse into the cop world but it's not perfect...and VERY edited. I love the fake siren blasts they do right before a car stops or takes off in a pursuit.

            Oh yeah, drunks love to argue.
            "It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived." --General George Patton

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            • #7
              I love when they ask what they are being arrested for. But, I'm still waiting for the one, who after I tell him, "for being in violation of Title 21 of the United States Code, section 841, paragraph 1, sub-paragraph a and section 846", says, "Oh, that's what I was afraid it was for."

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              • #8
                Originally posted by L-1
                I can't say that about my state:

                PC 841. The person making the arrest must inform the person to be
                arrested of the intention to arrest him, of the cause of the arrest,
                and the authority to make it, except when the person making the
                arrest has reasonable cause to believe that the person to be arrested
                is actually engaged in the commission of or an attempt to commit an
                offense, or the person to be arrested is pursued immediately after
                its commission, or after an escape.

                The person making the arrest must, on request of the person he is
                arresting, inform the latter of the offense for which he is being
                arrested.
                Interesting. Figures CA would have that law lol

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Group 29
                  I love when they ask what they are being arrested for. But, I'm still waiting for the one, who after I tell him, "for being in violation of Title 21 of the United States Code, section 841, paragraph 1, sub-paragraph a and section 846", says, "Oh, that's what I was afraid it was for."


                  ROTFL!!! Very nice

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by justice12
                    Interesting. Figures CA would have that law lol
                    While the law says you have to tell them, it doesn't say when you have to tell them. If they asked, I would tell them. But, if someone became an argumentative PITA, I just said I would put everything in writing for them when we got to the jail. It pleased them to no end that I would go to that much trouble for them. Imagine their disappointment when they discovered that getting everything in writing simply meant getting a copy of the booking slip.
                    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by justice12
                      You don't have the right to know why you are being arrested. It doesn't matter anyway, because you don't have the right to resist the arrest. There is a limitation on how long you can be held without charges however.

                      From my experience, usually police officers always tell the arrestee what they are being arrested for. If they don't, it's because why should they bother talking to some blathering idiot who knows exactly what he is being arrested for and is just trying to start an argument. "I know my rights man!!!" lol
                      Actually, under Amendment 6, counselor, don't we have the right to know what heinous crim we are accused of ? I could swear it says that - "the right to know the nature of the offense" or some such? OF course, this is at trial, rathe than on the street, I think.
                      The All New
                      2013
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                      • #12
                        It does always start an arguement - especialy with a drunk. I always tried to avoid the question but if they asked - I'd tell'm. WHo cares?
                        The All New
                        2013
                        BBQ and Goldfish Pond Club
                        Sully - IAM Rand - JasperST - L1 - The Tick - EmmaPeel - Columbus - LA Dep - SgtSlaughter - OneAdam12 - Retired96 - Iowa #1603
                        - M1Garand

                        (any BBQ and Goldfish Pond member may nominate another user for membership but just remember ..... this ain't no weenie roast!)



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                        • #13
                          99% of the time I will tell the person what they are being arrested for. Like others have said, at least one of the charges. They will figure out the rest when they are booked into the counties hotel.
                          In law enforcement, the customer is ALWAYS wrong.

                          In God we trust. Everyone else is run through NCIC.

                          Sometimes there is justice. Sometimes there is just us.

                          I'd rather be tried by 12 then carried by 6.


                          The opinions given in my posts do not necessarily reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 1042 Trooper
                            Actually, under Amendment 6, counselor, don't we have the right to know what heinous crim we are accused of ? I could swear it says that - "the right to know the nature of the offense" or some such? OF course, this is at trial, rathe than on the street, I think.
                            LOL Hey, I went to a "second tier" law school, so what do you expect?

                            Seriously, I could be wrong, but I'm pretty sure the 6th amendment applies to "criminal prosecutions", meaning you have the right to know the nature of the offense at time of trial. Plus, it makes sense that there is no such constitutional right, as CA apparently felt it was necessary to pass that law that L-1 quoted.

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                            • #15
                              Up here in Quebec, you have to give the general infraction as soon as possible or the person is legally right in trying to resist arrest. Later in the car, we go into the specifics. I don't see the big deal in giving general terms when I've already got him/her in custody....
                              P.

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