A Detective is Asking Me Questions. Should I Answer?
Updated: Feb 11, 2022
You May be Under Investigation
Almost every day we talk to people in our community who are dealing with a situation where a detective from the local police agency has called and left a message or left a card asking to speak. When this happens, it is possible you are being investigated for some type of crime and the detective wants to ask you questions.
What should you do?
Most of the time you should not give an interview to a detective without more information.
What to Remember When Speaking to a Detective
If you are being investigated, anything you say can be used against you.
We’ve all heard this line repeated in movies and TV shows, but it’s important to stop and consider what it actually means. Statements by the accused person, or the Defendant, are usually admissible evidence in a trial against that person. Many people are caught off guard when they casually talk to a detective and then later have statements used against them in an entirely different context.
The law allows a detective to be dishonest with you in order to elicit additional information from you.
Investigators are allowed to bluff or exaggerate in order to try to get information from someone. This means that while you are being investigated, you can never be certain that what you are being told is 100% accurate. Think about what this means: you are being asked to take a quiz without studying, without knowing what questions will be asked, and even without knowing which subject you’re being tested on! That’s almost always sets you up to lose.
How an Attorney Helps
This is where an experienced defense attorney can help. We are able to intervene and speak to a detective on your behalf. This allows us to gather information about what is being investigated and what evidence the government may have against you. But in certain circumstances, it also allows us to tell your side of the story. Remember, statements your lawyer makes are not admissible in court.
Sometimes we can even provide the detective with the information he or she needs to end the investigation without filing a case against you.
But most importantly, we can do all of this without you running the risk of having your statements be used against you later. Call us before you call the detective back. We can help.