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What Happens When I Am Arrested?

If you have never been arrested, the process can be frightening and intimidating.  However, it is important that you understand the things you should and should not do whenever you are placed in this situation.  The best way to protect yourself is to understand what is happening, what your rights are, and how you can safely exercise them. When you are arrested, several things will happen.  Here is what may take place as well as what your reaction should be in each situation:An officer may detain you and ask you questions. Officers have the right to detain you briefly to ask you basic questions about any situation.  You do not have to answer these questions, and if you have been involved in any type of illegal situation, it is best if you do not.  Simply decline politely to answer questions without your attorney present.  In some cases, this is enough to avoid an arrest; in other cases, you may be placed under arrest and transported to a police station. You may be handcuffed and fingerprinted. Officers may handcuff you in order to transport you safely.  If you experience back problems or other physical issues, inform the officers before you are cuffed or transported.  You have a right to have your physical condition considered during arrest and transport.  You may also be fingerprinted once you arrive at the station.  You do not have the right to refuse to give your prints when you are under arrest, although you can refuse to do so when you are simply being questioned. You may be questioned. The best way to handle any questioning is to wait for your attorney.  It is normal to want to clear your name or explain yourself, but save any answers for your attorney, who can then decide whether to convey them to the police. You have the right to an attorney. You may request that your attorney be contacted as soon as you are placed under arrest.  While the amount of time this takes varies from one jurisdiction to another, Arizona a 48-hour rule:  you must be processed and arraigned within 48 hours of your arrest, including having an opportunity to meet with an attorney. You will be arraigned and read your charges. The arraignment is a chance for an attorney and client to hear the formal charges against the defendant and enter a plea.  It is important that you discuss this process with your attorney before entering any plea. If you are arrested, contact the criminal defense attorneys at the Oswalt Law Group in Phoenix today.

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