Aside from familiarizing yourself with your rights, Floridians should also take the time to learn what their responsibilities are when they come in contact with a police officer as their actions could be the deciding factor in whether they are let free to go or if they are arrested and criminally charged. The reality is, there are plenty of individuals who are unaware of what their rights and responsibilities are and engage in behavior that only results in them being faced with the consequences for their actions. On that same note, there are also times when citizens take care of their responsibilities and are still harassed, mistreated, and illegally arrested by a police officer.
Those individuals should contact a police brutality attorney right away to discuss what forms of legal recourse they can take to combat the mistreatment.
Now, if you live in Bradford County, FL or another county within the state of Florida, we want to help you become better informed on what your responsibilities are so that if you happen to come in contact with an officer of the law, you know how to behave and what your obligations are to prevent from having it become an unruly encounter.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), some of your responsibilities include:
- Not interfering with the police or obstructing their investigation. When an officer claims you are obstructing their investigation, they can detain you and have criminal charges filed against you for this.
- Do not provide false information or documents. It is never a good idea to attempt to deceive police as it will only make matters worse for you.
- You must carry with you any immigration documents that prove you are living and/or working in the U.S. legally if you are over 18 years of age and are not a U.S. citizen. Individuals who are living or working in the U.S. and have been granted permission by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to reside here must provide the necessary documentation that proves this when asked for it. In most cases, an officer must have probable cause for even approaching you and requesting these documents, however, given that they do, you should have them readily available for them.
Some other responsibilities the ACLU highlights include:
- Do not run, argue, or resist the officer. Even if you know you haven’t committed a crime, you could be putting yourself in a compromising situation that could end with officers applying deadly force. Therefore, to prevent from being physically harmed, refrain from doing any of the following and when you have the opportunity, you can address your issue with a Bradford County, FL police brutality attorney.
- Keep your hands where the officer can see them. There have been one too many accounts where innocent individuals have been shot to death simply because they were trying to prove they didn’t have a weapon in their possession but because of where they placed their hands, that led officers into believing that they were a threat.
- When stopped while driving, be sure to “turn off your car, turn on the interior light, open the window a little, and place your hands on the steering wheel.” Keeping your hands where they can be seen at all times prevents an officer from assuming you are reaching for something dangerous, hiding evidence, and reduces the chances of them applying excessive force.
- Provide the officer with proof of insurance along with your driver’s license if asked for it.
When an individual is pulled over, stopped, or questioned by a police officer, the ultimate goal is to be able to walk away without being harmed, arrested, or killed. Therefore, you are encouraged to review your rights along with the responsibilities provided above and share the information with your friends and loved ones. As for anyone who has become the victim of police misconduct, you are encouraged to contact USAttorneys.com so that you can be connected with a Bradford County, FL police brutality lawyer located in your area. Police brutality is a major issue that continues to affect the lives of individuals and the only way to stop it is to take a stand against it.
If you are ready to speak with a lawyer now who is prepared to help you with your unfortunate police encounter, contact USAttorneys.com as soon as possible.