3 Reasons You Should Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

3 Reasons You Should Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

You have the right to remain silent. The right not to self incriminate afforded under the Fifth Amendment protects criminal defendants or suspects from having to testify or make statements that may incriminate themselves. The Fifth Amendment states: “No person… shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself[.]”

Your right to remain silent extends to two situations: when being interrogated by law enforcement officers and when testifying in legal proceedings.

3 Reasons You Should Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

If you are being questioned by law enforcement from any governmental agency regarding a crime, it is almost always in your best interest to remain silent.

  1. Law enforcement officers are not on your side.

Their job is to gather evidence against you. Officers are highly trained in tactics to get suspects to talk. They may make you feel like they are trying to help you, they may even lie to you in an effort to get you to give them information. Do not fall for their tactics.

You do not have to answer questions posed to you by law enforcement.  Be polite but firm in your desire to remain silent and ask for an attorney. You have the right to have an attorney present during any questioning. Remain silent until your attorney is by your side to protect your rights. Even if you believe you have done nothing wrong, we urge you to remain silent until your attorney is present.

  1. Cooperating with law enforcement is unlikely to lead to leniency.

Law enforcement officers can lie to you. They can tell you that if you answer their questions they will make sure the prosecution “goes easy on you.”

Certainly there are times when cooperating with law enforcement is the best thing to do, but it is critical that you have an experienced white collar criminal defense attorney by your side when speaking with law enforcement, especially if you are divulging information critical to their case.

  1. Anything you say can be used against you.

If you answer questions posed by law enforcement without an attorney present, you are at risk of inadvertently making an admission of guilt. Your own words may be taken out of context and then used against you. It is advisable to first discuss your side of the story with your attorney, then let her advise you on how to best convey your side of the events to law enforcement.

Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

We encourage you to invoke your right to an attorney and remain silent until your attorney is present during questioning.

There is no white collar criminal case that is too complex or too challenging for us. No matter how difficult your case may appear, contact Ashley D. Adams, PLC for the legal protection you need.

Contact our Arizona fraud and criminal defense attorneys on the web or call (480) 219-1366 for a consultation and case evaluation. There is no substitute for the type of experience and diligent legal representation that a high-quality attorney can provide.

We practice excellence, one client at a time.


Our firm handles state criminal cases throughout Arizona including the cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale, Glendale, Mesa, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Maricopa, Gilbert, Peoria, Surprise, Goodyear, Litchfield Park, Avondale, Chandler, Casa Grande, Florence, Queen Creek, Deer Valley, North Pinal and Sun City as well as those living in and around Maricopa County, Pinal County, Pima County, Yuma County and Yavapai County.

We handle federal criminal cases throughout the United States, including Arizona, Oklahoma, Utah, and California.