No matter where you are in the state of Georgia, it’s important to know how to handle police interactions. Whether you’re being pulled over for a traffic stop or you’re being questioned as a witness to a crime, it’s crucial that you know your rights and how to protect yourself.
Here are a few tips on how to handle police interactions in Georgia:
Be polite and respectful.
Even if you think the officer is in the wrong, it’s important to remain calm and polite. Keep your hands visible and avoid sudden movements.
Know your rights.
You have the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. If you’re being questioned as a witness, you may not be under arrest and you may decline to answer questions. If you’re being arrested, you should still remain silent and ask for an attorney.
Don’t consent to a search.
Unless the officer has a warrant, you have the right to decline a search of your person or property. If the officer searches without your consent, anything they find may not be used as evidence against you.
Be aware of your surroundings.
If you’re being pulled over, try to find a well-lit, populated area to stop. If you’re being questioned as a witness, be aware of your surroundings and who else is around.
Keep a record of the interaction.
If you’re able, try to take notes or record the interaction. Get the officer’s name and badge number. If you’re being arrested, ask why you’re being arrested.
By following these tips, you can help protect yourself during a police interaction. Remember, you have rights and you should exercise them.