Understanding the Dangers of Talking to the Police—Even When You Think You Are Innocent

What would you do at work if your boss called you into his office and said you were going to face disciplinary measures for something you know you didn’t do? Of course, you would detail exactly what happened and why you are not at fault, right?

What about if you got home late from running errands and your spouse begins to yell at you because they suspect you of infidelity? Certainly, you would do all you can to explain the situation and allay their fears, correct?

Unfortunately, the way we intuitively respond to misunderstandings in our normal life could end up doing much more harm than good when it comes to talking to the police.

It is human instinct to defend ourselves, try to correct errors and make sense of confusion or mix-ups. Thus, when the police show up at your home or workplace to arrest you on criminal charges, most people naturally believe they can simply explain their innocence and talk their way out of it. If you simply tell them what happened, the police will understand that they’ve made a mistake, right?


What most people do not realize in the heat of the moment is that the police would not be there to arrest you if they did not already have what they believe to be probable cause for your arrest.

The term probable cause comes from the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution, and it means in layman’s terms that the police must have a good and clear reason to believe you have committed a crime in order to arrest you.

Thus, there is almost nothing you could possibly say when the police show up to arrest you that will change their minds, even if you really are innocent. In fact, the police want you to try to explain the situation to them in hopes of garnering information that could be used to prosecute you, or even what would amount to a confession without you even realizing you are confessing.

Your best decision at this point is to make full use of your right to remain silent until you have spoken with a defense attorney. Even if the police just want to speak with you and are not yet ready to arrest you, you should wait until you have a defense attorney present who can ensure you fully understand the goals of the police in talking to you and make sure you are not giving them ammunition to use against you in a criminal trial.

Whether you are innocent or not, speaking with the police on your own will almost always do more harm than good. So, when the police show up, always play it safe and wait to speak with them or explain anything until you have a strong defense attorney present.

If you have been charged with a crime or if the police are requesting to speak with you, please contact the law office of Barry M. Wax today to ensure that your rights are protected and that you don’t accidentally say anything that could be considered incriminating.

Law Offices of Barry M. Wax