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Can the Police Actually Lie to Me?

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We get a lot of questions about whether the police can or do lie to people. This is an important question and the answer to it is why we encourage anyone who believes they are being investigated by the police to contact an attorney immediately.
The short answer to the question of whether the police can lie to you is: yes. Yes, the police can, and often do, lie to people during the course of an investigation. As far as the courts are concerned, there’s good reason for that. The reason that the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as state courts, have ruled repeatedly that it’s a legitimate police tactic for the police to lie to you is because the most important piece of evidence the police can get from any suspect is a confession.
So, in the effort of seeking a confession, the police can say that they have a witness, or video evidence, or DNA, or fingerprints, or anything they think will encourage somebody to give a statement against their interest, even if they don’t actually have those things. And it works. People speaking to police during an investigation can come to believe that they did do something wrong because they trust the police to tell them the truth. Of course, that’s an extreme example, but it’s not unheard of.
If you ever find yourself in a situation where you are being questioned by the police, you should remember two things: first, remember that the police are trained to lie to you to get the statement they want. Second, remember that you have the right to counsel, even during an investigation. When you say you want a lawyer, you invoke your rights under the 4th, 5th, and 6th amendments. The police cannot question you any longer until you have access to a lawyer. A lawyer will not magically appear, but it’s very important that you know that you have the right to ask for one – even if it takes a day or more to get one.
If you’re in a situation where you believe you may be the subject of an investigation or you’re worried that the police might have lied to you, the attorneys at the Complete Legal Defense Team can explain to you further what your rights and responsibilities are. Contact us for a confidential consultation today.

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