The Police may only be looking into charging you when they request you to provide a statement or interview. You could easily admit guilt or provide them with evidence they need in order to make the decision to proceed with charging you. The Police may even try and trick you into providing information. Whilst you would then be provided with an official copy of the record of interview on a disc, if you have admitted to the crime it restricts our ability to defend you at our full potential.
It should be noted that the Police may be recording you with recording devices when you are talking to them. This could be at the Police Station, roadside or at your residence. Further, when you are dealing with the Police you should try to remain as calm as possible. Getting angry and acting uncooperatively will be recorded in your charge documents and could subsequently be read out by the Police Prosecutions, in Court to the Magistrate. Obviously, this is not going to assist you in obtaining the best result possible. Always act as polite and respectable as possible when dealing with the Police. If you are difficult or abusive the process will be much longer and more painful for you.
Even in cases when you do not believe you have done anything wrong and that you have nothing to hide you should still consider to decline the police requests for an interview or a statement until you have sought legal advice. Things can get misconstrued or questioning relating to your current charge or minor matter may become much larger and more serious. Your words may be twisted, used against you and influence the Police’s decision to charge you. Once a statement or record of interview has been done it cannot be retracted. Please also remember that there is no such thing as an ‘off the record’ discussion with the Police.
The Police will know that anyone who has sought legal advice will likely decline an interview. The best way to deal with any legal charge is to obtain a Lawyer and seek assistance as soon as you are charged.
The disadvantages of giving a statement might include:
- It may be that the police will be unable to prove their case against you without some facts being conceded at the interview. There is a very real risk that by participating in an interview with the investigating police you will be providing evidence to the prosecution that may otherwise be unattainable.
- Admissions to things that seem small or insignificant to you such as where you stayed on a particular night, whether you visited a particular place or whether you were with a particular person all assist the police to further their inquiries in building a case against you where there may not otherwise be any evidence.
- The police may "bluff" you into admissions or creating a false story which is later proved to be false.
- You are likely to be in a stressed state, may not have had much sleep, may be intoxicated or hung-over and generally not in a good state to participate in an interview with police.
Remember it is always possible to give an oral or written statement on another day.
At Clarity Law we appear in Courts throughout Brisbane and on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts on a daily basis.
If you want to engage us or just need further information or advice then you can either;
- Use our contact form
- Visit our webpage – www.claritylaw.com.au
- Call us on 1300 952 255 seven days a week, 7am to 7pm
Disclaimer: This article is written for guidance only and does not take into account your individual circumstances and is not intended to replace independent legal advice.