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Virginia police officers are not friends of criminal defendants

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Virginia police officers are not friends of defendants, says Fairfax criminal lawyer

Virginia police officers are not friends of criminal defendants. As a Fairfax criminal lawyer, I say this out of pure reality, and not from any political agenda, but certainly out of an agenda of pursuing the best possible results for those accused of Virginia DUI and criminal offenses. Unfortunately, many arrested people take on characteristics of Stockholm/ hostage syndrome, by identifying with and seeking to get into the good graces of the same police officers whose only agenda is to have the arrestee fully prosecuted.

Am I unpatriotic and disloyal by fully asserting my rights with the police?

Many of my Virginia DUI and criminal defense clients look less likely to be prosecuted for alleged crimes than to be attending the training academy graduation ceremonies of Virginia police officers, and to be making donations to the fraternal order of police. This is particularly true of those charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, dugs and medication, as such alleged behavior is common across socioeconomic lines. This also highlights that police do not avoid arresting people who otherwise are like “just one of us.” They want to keep their jobs, and will investigate and arrest even people who look like their first cousin. Consequently, it is not unpatriotic, radical nor disloyal at all for you to fully assert your Constitutional rights with the police, that have been hard fought for your on the battlefields of war and in the courthouse battlefields. In fact, it honors the Bill of Rights and those who fought for such rights, when you exercise those rights.

Don’t I want to make the lives of Virginia police officers easily, after all they do for us?

Many of my DUI and criminal clients arrested by Virginia police officers strongly believe in the policing status quo, get concerned about giving police a hard time in investigating them, and do not want to alienate them by fully asserting the arrestee’s rights. Ask yourself this: Do cops similarly want to cut you a break and want not to upset you? No. Even law enforcement officers with the kindest tone of voice still handcuff you when they believe they have probable cause to do so, get you prosecuted, and leave the rest in the hands of the prosecutors. Do you prefer strengthening your criminal defense posture by alienating a police officer by fully asserting your right to remain silent with the police, to refuse searches, and to decline field sobriety tests, or do you prefer to fall on your own sword by cozying up to the same law enforcement officers who are arresting you?

Do law enforcement officers always play by the rules?

Being drawn from society at large, Virginia police officers do not always play by the rules. A large percentage of the population at large routinely lie and engage in other underhanded behavior. Do not expect that all police officers are immune from such misbehavior. This is not about needing to be anti-cop or pro-cop, versus pro-protection of you.

If the law allows police officers to lie to criminal suspects to get them to talk, how do they turn off the lying when they get to the witness stand?

The appellate courts allow Virginia police officers to lie to criminal suspects in order to seek confessions from them. That being the case, how can police officers skillfully turn on the lying when pursuing a suspect’s confession, and turn it off when on the witness stand? Do not be the guinea pig for finding out that answer, rather than fully asserting your rights with law enforcement to decline to speak with the police, to decline searches, and to decline field sobriety tests.

Fairfax criminal lawyer Jonathan Katz pursues your best defense against Virginia DUI and criminal offenses. Call 703-383-1100 to secure your free in-person confidential consultation with Jon Katz about your court-pending case.

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