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Ashkira Mohamud Explores Your Rights When Arrested: A Guide to Legal Protections



Ashkira Mohamud Explores Your Rights When Arrested A Guide to Legal Protections

Being arrested can be a stressful experience, especially if you are unaware of your legal rights. Understanding your rights can save you from injustices and assure a fair legal process. In this guide, Ashkira Mohamud, will inform you of your legal protections and empower you to navigate an arrest confidently.

What Are Your Rights When Arrested?

When arrested, you have specific rights safeguarded by law. These include:

  • The right to remain silent
  • The right to legal representation
  • The right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty
  • The right to a fair and speedy trial

What Is the Difference Between Arrest and Detention?

Understanding the distinction between arrest and detention is crucial in legal contexts.

  • Arrest: Involves taking a person into custody due to suspicion of committing a crime.
  • Detention: Refers to the temporary holding of an individual by law enforcement for questioning or other legal processes without necessarily formal charges.

What Are the Legal Protections When Arrested?

Right to Remain Silent

  • When arrested, individuals have the right to remain silent, which allows them to choose not to answer any questions posed by law enforcement.

Right to an Attorney

  • Request a lawyer immediately upon arrest.
  • If unable to afford one, ask for a public defender.
  • Only discuss your case with your attorney present.

Right to Know the Charges

When arrested, you have the right to know the charges against you.

Right to a Speedy Trial

When exercising the right to a speedy trial, the following steps are involved:

  • Filing a request for a speedy trial with the court.
  • The court then schedules the trial within a reasonable time frame, typically within 70 days of the request .
  • The defense and the prosecution prepare for trial, ensuring evidence and witnesses are in place.
  • The trial proceeds promptly, allowing for a fair and swift resolution.

Right to a Fair Trial

The right to a fair trial encompasses:

  • Impartial jury selection.
  • Competent legal representation.
  • Presentation of evidence and witnesses.
  • Possibility of appeal.

What Are the Steps of the Arrest Process?

Initial Contact

During an arrest, the initial contact is crucial and involves:

  • Identification by law enforcement
  • Description of the reason for the arrest
  • Advisement of rights, including the right to stay quiet and the right to a lawyer

Probable Cause

  • Police Observation: An officer may witness suspicious behavior or actions that lead them to believe there is probable cause for a crime.
  • Witness Reports: Information from witnesses or victims can contribute to establishing probable cause.
  • Suspect’s Behavior: A person’s conduct, such as attempting to flee or hiding something, can raise suspicion and provide probable cause.
  • Physical Evidence: Discovering incriminating items or substances can provide grounds for probable cause.

Arrest Warrant

  • Issuance: A judge authorizes an arrest warrant based on probable cause.
  • Specificity: The warrant must specify the individual to be arrested and the alleged offense.
  • Execution: Law enforcement officers execute the warrant by apprehending the individual.
  • Legitimacy: Negligence to attach to the requirements of the arrest warrant can render the arrest illegal.

Booking and Bail

  • After being arrested, the suspect is transferred to a police station for the booking procedure, which includes registering personal data, taking fingerprints, and catching mugshots.
  • During the booking process, the suspect’s eligibility for bail is evaluated based on the sincerity of the apparent crime and their past unlawful history.
  • If awarded bail, the suspect can post the set amount to secure bail until the trial date.
  • If incapable of paying bail, the suspect will be held in custody until the trial.


  • Arraignment is a standard reading of the charges where the defendant arises before a judge or magistrate.
  • The charges are shown, and the defendant is requested to enter a plea (guilty, not guilty, or no contest).
  • Bail may be set, and the next bench date is planned.
  • If the defendant cannot afford a lawyer, one may be appointed.

Preliminary Hearing

The preliminary hearing, also known as the pretrial hearing, involves several crucial steps:

  • Evidence Presentation: The prosecution presents evidence to establish probable cause for the charges.
  • Legal Arguments: Every side argues about admissible proof and other case-related issues.
  • Judge’s Decision: The judge decides if there’s enough evidence to move the case to trial or dismiss it.


  • Opening Statements: The prosecuting and defense attorneys present their introductory statements in a court trial.
  • Presentation of Evidence: Witnesses are called to testify, and evidence is presented to support the case.
  • Closing Arguments: Attorneys summarize the evidence and provide their final arguments in a court trial.
  • Jury Instructions: The judge instructs the jury on how to deliberate and reach a verdict in a court trial.
  • Verdict: The jury decides guilty or not guilty in a court trial.

What Are the Consequences of an Unlawful Arrest?

Civil Rights Violations

  • Discriminatory Practices: Racial profiling during arrests can result in violations of civil rights.
  • Excessive Force: Inappropriate use by law enforcement during an arrest can also lead to civil rights violations.
  • Unlawful Detention: Holding individuals without proper legal justification is a civil rights violation.
  • Freedom of Speech: Arrests made to suppress free speech or assembly breach civil rights.
  • Right to Due Process: Denying fair legal proceedings infringes upon civil rights.

False Imprisonment

False imprisonment seriously violates an individual’s rights and can result in legal consequences. It is essential to understand the necessary steps in a false imprisonment case:

  • Evidence Collection: Gather relevant documents, recordings, or eyewitness testimonies to support the false imprisonment claim.
  • Legal Consultation: Pursue guidance from a reputable attorney specializing in civil freedoms and false imprisonment issues.
  • Filing a Lawsuit: File a civil case against the liable party for false detention, pursuing compensatory and punitive damages.
  • Court Proceedings: Attend all court hearings and follow the legal procedures diligently.
  • Seeking Justice: Work closely with your legal representation to pursue justice and hold the responsible party accountable.

Malicious Prosecution

The following steps outline the process of dealing with malicious prosecution:

  1. Evidence Collection: Gather all possible evidence to support your innocence.
  2. Legal Representation: Seek a competent attorney with experience handling malicious prosecution cases.
  3. Court Proceedings: Prepare for court appearances and follow legal advice closely.

Excessive Force

Excessive force during an arrest refers to the unjustified use of physical or psychological coercion by law enforcement. Here are examples of excessive force:

  • Unnecessary physical violence during apprehension
  • Use of Tasers or pepper spray without justification
  • Verbal or psychological intimidation beyond what’s necessary
  • Unreasonable restraint techniques
  • Failure to provide medical aid when needed

Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death can have severe legal implications, including:

  • Negligence or misconduct leading to death
  • Violation of civil rights
  • Potential for legal action against law enforcement
  • Possibility of compensation for the deceased’s family

Seek legal counsel for guidance and support during such challenging times.

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