Can The Police Interrogate Your Child?

Law Blog

As a parent, you might question the legality of the police questioning your child about whether or not he or she was involved in a crime. Just like adults, your child has rights when it comes to being questioned by police. If your child has already been questioned or is facing questioning, it is important that you and your child understand his or her rights.

Voluntary Statements

The police has the right to approach your child and ask him or her questions. If your child voluntarily answers the question without actually being taken into custody, any information he or she gives the police can be used in court by the prosecutor. The police officer that took the statement can be called on to testify that the statement was given willing and also repeat what was said by your child.

It is important to note that the statements cannot be forced in any way. If your child admits to committing a crime while being forced to by a police officer, the admission is considered to be inadmissible in a court of law.

Miranda Rights

If a police officer approaches your child and places him or her in custody, your child does not have to answer any questions without first hearing his or her Miranda rights. If your child is taken into custody and his or her rights are not read, any statements made by your child could be considered inadmissible.

Your child also has the right to refuse to answer questions without legal counsel. No further questioning of the child can take place without an attorney present.

Since your child is a minor, he or she also has the right to ask that a parent be notified of the arrest. Once you are notified, you can ask that questioning stop until an attorney is consulted.

Improper Questioning

In the event that the police does improperly question your child, you have a few options for dealing with the situation. A criminal lawyer can file a motion with the court to have the child's statements deemed inadmissible.

You and your attorney could also file a complaint with the city and the police department. If your child states that he or she was physically harmed while in custody, you could even file a lawsuit on behalf of your child. Even if your child was denied food, rest, and water, you can file a suit.

Talk to a criminal defense lawyer as soon as you receive notice your child has been taken into custody. If your child is not in custody, but you expect police to question him or her, consult with a lawyer. Your lawyer could possibly arrange for your child to meet with police for voluntary questioning.


22 April 2015

Business Law Basics: What Small Business Owners Need to Know

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