Oct 30, 2008
Protect Your Rights: How To Deal With The Police If You Get Pulled Over
The above video is the correct way to handle a traffic stop. After the jump, I’ve posted several very informative videos about dealing with police, including the complete video that this excerpt was taken from, called “BUSTED: The Citizen’s Guide to Surviving Police Encounters“.
If you get pulled over, just remain calm and remember your rights. Keep your hands on the wheel where the officer can see them. Police officers in some states have the legal right to search your car if they say they “smell” drug smoke. This is a very obvious loophole, but one you have to deal with since it is the law. The best way to deal with it is to only lower your window enough to talk to the officer and pass him your license and registration. You are under no obligation to lower your window completely.
When he requests them, show the officer your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance. Try to remember the officers’ badge number and patrol car numbers, and write them down as soon as you have the chance. Police WILL try to intimidate you, and they WILL make you wait. Maintain your composure, don’t show fear, and be polite. The police officer will most likely ask you if you know why he pulled you over. Say no, never admit to speeding or try to guess why you were pulled over; just say no.
Don’t get into an argument with the police. You cannot win an argument with a police officer. Also remember that anything you say or do can be used against you, so say as little as possible. In some cases, police can search your car without a warrant based on “probable cause”. Make it clear that you do not consent to a search so you’re protected later on. It’s not lawful for police to arrest you simply for refusing to consent to a search. Remember that, NEVER consent to search.
Refusing a search DOESN’T mean you’re guilty. The age old argument: “Well sonny, honest people don’t have anything to hide” is nonsense. That argument has been debunked many times over. Don’t let that old line influence you.
At the bottom of this post, I’ve posted several very informative videos. The first two are from a talk given by James Duane, a lawyer and law professor, and the third is the complete Flex Your Rights video on how to handle a police stop.
Unfortunately, police enjoy a monopoly on protection. They’re the only game in town, so they aren’t pressured by the forces of the free market to make their customers happy. Police can generally act however they want and do whatever they please and we have to keep paying them to protect us. It’s an unfortunate situation, but until we live in a world with competing police services, where we can choose protection companies like we choose our cell phone provider, then we have to deal with it. So remember your rights, and don’t give in to police intimidation.
Don’t talk to cops, part 1:
Don’t talk to cops, part 2:
BUSTED: The Citizen’s Guide to Surviving Police Encounters: