You are under arrest when a police officer or sheriff verbally tells you that you are under arrest or if you are not free to leave (for example, you are being transported to a police station for questioning without your consent.) It is very important that you do not resist arrest. It is unsafe and doing so can result in additional charges being brought against you.
Types of Arrests
- Arrest with a warrant: Police or a private citizen make an affidavit before a judge and the judge issues a warrant if they have probable cause to believe the accused committed the offense.
- Arrest without a warrant: In Georgia, you can only be arrest without a warrant if an offense is committed in the officer’s presence, you are attempting to escape, there is probable cause that an act of family violence has occurred, or a failure of justice is likely to occur but a judge is not available to issue a warrant.
- Citizen’s arrest: The right of private citizens to make a citizen’s arrest is limited. A citizen’s arrest can only be made if a private citizen sees another person committing a crime and cannot be made for violations of local ordinances or regulations.
What Are My Rights During an Arrest?
- You have the right to be treated humanely (police cannot use “excessive force”)
- You have the right to ask for identification (the officer’s name and badge number.)
- You have the right to be informed of the crime of which you are being charged.
- You do not have to consent to any type of search without a search warrant.
- You have the right to remain silent.
- After an arrest, you have the right to make a phone call.
What Are My Rights When Being Questioned by Police?
Before being questioned (even if you haven’t been formally arrested,) an officer should give you a Miranda warning to inform you of your constitutional rights. Even if you are not told your rights, you still have them.
- The right to remain silent.
- Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
- You have the right to talk to an attorney and have that attorney present for your questioning. You may be asked to waive these rights so that police can question you without an attorney. You do not have to waive those rights.
- If you cannot afford to hire an attorney, one will be appointed to you.
- Even if you agree to talk, you can still stop an interview at any time.
If you or a loved one have been arrested, contact us immediately. We can help you with this often confusing and emotionally overwhelming process and assist you with arranging bond.