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Don't talk to the police - Input Junkie
January 29th, 2012
12:28 pm


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Don't talk to the police

This is really important information, but you're also likely to be entertained and fascinated while you're listening to it.

The first half is a fast-talking funny law professor who used to be a defense attorney. The second half is an occasionally funny normal-speed-talking police officer, who doesn't mean to arrest or contribute to the conviction of innocent people.... but he doesn't seem to be able to wrap his mind around the idea that he's doing so. He might be lying about that last.

Anyway, cynical as I am, there were a few details which surprised me. I didn't know the Federal government can't keep track of all its laws which define felonies. Or that anything you say to a police officer which might indicate your innocence is hearsay and inadmissible at a trial, but anything which might indicate guilt is admissible. Any slight mistakes or exaggerations you make when talking to the police will be considered lies and used to wreck your credibility.

I did know that the police are allowed to lie to you in interrogations interviews, but I didn't know all the subtle implications.

Link thanks to andrewducker, though I don't know how many of the details transfer to Scotland.

ETA: Details for the UK.

This entry was posted at http://nancylebov.dreamwidth.org/524972.html. Comments are welcome here or there. comment count unavailable comments so far on that entry.

(6 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:January 29th, 2012 06:10 pm (UTC)
There's a helpful comment from an English barrister on my post, which illuminates some differences.
[User Picture]
Date:January 29th, 2012 06:11 pm (UTC)
And of course positive things you say aren't evidence. If you say "I didn't do it" then that's meaningless, as you'd say that whether you were innocence or not. If you say "I did do it, with an axe." then that's evidence, because you're admitting guilt.
[User Picture]
Date:January 29th, 2012 06:14 pm (UTC)
Even if you say it as sarcasm.
[User Picture]
Date:January 29th, 2012 06:16 pm (UTC)
Much as when dealing with airport security I advise not making jokes about bombs, when dealing with police detectives I recommend not making jokes about killing people.
[User Picture]
Date:January 30th, 2012 12:02 am (UTC)
This is a first for me: I watched that whole 48 minutes with sick fascination. Yikes.

Thanks for posting! I will definitely be remembering this and telling my friends about it.
[User Picture]
Date:January 31st, 2012 09:30 am (UTC)

(looks wry)

The police officer could well be telling the subjective truth. "I don't send innocent people to jail". He doesn't think anyone they arrest is innocent, and if they're technically innocent, they're guilty of something so it's fungible. People rationalize quite well.

Or he might be lying. This is why we need to ban cop shows. They glorify the police and incline society to give them a blank cheque when they're just humans and they have a job staring up the anus of society (as SM Stirling put it) which even in the best of circumstances dispirits and challenges the human spirit. And most people don't navigate spiritual challenges well :(
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