What to do if the police want to talk to you

When this happens it can be a tremendous shock, whatever the circumstances. The most important thing to realise is that is not an everyday event and your “conversation” with the police will not be ordinary. The reason the police want to talk to you is very formal and very far from an everyday discussion that you may normally have.

The police have received an allegation and they need to explain that allegation to you and then get your response. If it was as simple as that it would be fairly common sense but it is not. The police officers are specially trained for this task and their job is to collect evidence. They will tell you that they want to get at the truth or “get it sorted out” but in reality, their job is to get you to say things which will then be set out as evidence.

It is very difficult for me to explain 30 years of experience but I’ll give an example: The police may have an allegation that you were at a certain location. When you tell them that you were at that location but doing something perfectly innocent, they then do not need to prove that you were there because you have told them and that is the best possible evidence.

They are also specially trained to get you to talk at length because when people do that they tend to give away much more information than they intend. The normal advice is to listen carefully to the question, answer the question and keep the answer short.

I personally feel so strongly about this, that if you honestly believe that you are able to handle a specially trained professional detective in interview then I ask you, most sincerely, to call me free of charge so that I can at least talk to you about it and try to persuade you that a solicitor, any specialist criminal solicitor must be sitting next to you and must have advised you.

Please do not think that just because you are certain that you have done nothing wrong that you are not in a vulnerable situation. I regret that circumstances do occur where perfectly innocent people get charged by the police often because someone will have lie about them and said something which never happened but which they swear did.

I can only repeat that please make sure you have a solicitor with you when you talk to the police either formally or informally.

Video: What to do if the police want to talk to you

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