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Even if we assume that the questions the officer was asking was perfectly legal and well within the law, it is still my right to not answer directly is it not? Why can't I say, "that's personal", and not get harassed about it, especially if I answer in a respectful tone. Truly, it's none of the officers business where I was or where I am going.

I suppose it all boils down to the officers training, mood and his or her "intuition" about me as to what happens next.
 

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Discussion Starter #22
pro2am said:
Why can't I say, "that's personal", and not get harassed about it, especially if I answer in a respectful tone.
Because they are fallible humans, usually with more than their fair share of hubris, and they expect you to answer anything and do anything they tell you without question - so they can later tell the court that you acquiesed.

Read in Cartman voice:

"I am a cop, and you will respect my auth-or-i-tie!"

:roll:

 

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Discussion Starter #23
Wow! :shock: Look at this poor guys experience! This was over at THR:

Expired CHL - Vehicle searched

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The "DUI checkpoint" thread has prompted me to share a recent experience.

Let me preface this by saying that I am not a kid, by any stretch, and I do not have a chip on my shoulder regarding LEO. I am a middle-aged, clean cut professional and I make it a point to treat police officers with respect.

A few weeks ago, I was stopped for speeding in Houston by a Harris county constable. The officer alleges I was going 14 MPH over the posted limit. After I pulled over to the side of the freeway, taking extra care to get far enough off the road to make the stop as safe as possible, I put my car in park, rolled the window down, turned on the interior light, and placed both hands on the steering wheel. I then waited for the officer to approach my vehicle.

It was a few minutes after 11pm and it was one of the coldest nights of the year. When the officer approached my window, his demeanor did not hide the fact that he was very angry. I was hoping to get some brownie points for the way I had handled myself in preparation for his approach. No such luck. The officer begins barking at me like a drill sergeant. "Do you have ANY idea how fast you were going?" "No, sir," I repsond. He then proceeds to ask me a series of personal questions:

Where are you going?
Where are you coming from?
Have you been drinking? (I had not)

Foolishly, I politely answered them all. After the questions, he asked me for my DL and proof of insurance. As I open my wallet to get my DL, the officer is looking over my shoulder and shining his light on me. As I'm pulling out my DL, he notices my CHL. "What is that!?," he demanded. I told him it was an expired CHL and that I was not in possession of a gun. The officer instructs me to give him my CHL, tells me to sit tight, and walks back to his patrol car.

About ten minutes later, two more patrol cars arrive at the scene. The original officer approaches my window again and says, "I'm going to ask you one time ONLY. Do you have a firearm in this vehicle? Do not lie to me. If you have gun in this car and produce it now, you are going to have a problem, but if you lie to me and I have to find it on my own, you are going to have a much bigger problem." I politely explained to him that I was not carrying a gun and had not carried a gun since my CHL expired. He then asked permission to search my vehicle. I declined. He then walked back to his car to confer with the other back-up officers who were standing around.

22 minutes later, he and the back-up officers approached my vehicle and instructed me to get out of the car. I stepped out of the vehicle, he frisked me and handcuffed me. They instructed me to sit down on the side of the freeway and told me that they were going to search the car. To be clear, I said to the officers, "Just so there's no miscommunication, I did not give you permission to search my vehicle." The officer responds, "We don't need your permission. An expired CHL is probable cause."

So for the next 10 minutes, 3 officers conducted one of the most thorough vehicle searches that I can imagine, while I nearly froze to death on the side of a busy freeway with traffic whizzing by at 70 MPH less than 15ft from me. They removed all contents from my vehicle and placed it on the side of the freeway. They even pulled the carpet up from the footwell and looked under the carpet.

After the officers had completed their search, the original officer went to his car and wrote the speeding ticket. He came back, removed the cuffs, gave me the ticket and my licenses back, and told me to have a good evening.
 

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Hey MP:

Reading about the guy in Houston got me to thinking. Usually a dangerous thing...

What's the rule here? Can a cop handcuff you without placing you under arrest? What's the difference?

That guy sitting on the curb was in police custody just as surely as if he was in the Harris County Jail but there was no paperwork or paper trail to show it.

I see this happen on police TV shows occasionally, "I'm placing handcuffs on you for your protection and for mine".....

Other than not understanding how that can possibly be for the suspect's protection, what right does the cop have to do it and how long can they detail a person without actually placing the person under arrest?

Isn't that the same thing as false imprisonment or kidnapping or whatever? Could a person sue the cop for false arrest if he's never truly arrested, just handcuffed or put in the back of a patrol car?

Thanks. :handcuffs:
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Macktee said:
Hey MP:

Reading about the guy in Houston got me to thinking. Usually a dangerous thing...

What's the rule here? Can a cop handcuff you without placing you under arrest? What's the difference?

That guy sitting on the curb was in police custody just as surely as if he was in the Harris County Jail but there was no paperwork or paper trail to show it.

I see this happen on police TV shows occasionally, "I'm placing handcuffs on you for your protection and for mine".....

Other than not understanding how that can possibly be for the suspect's protection, what right does the cop have to do it and how long can they detail a person without actually placing the person under arrest?

Isn't that the same thing as false imprisonment or kidnapping or whatever? Could a person sue the cop for false arrest if he's never truly arrested, just handcuffed or put in the back of a patrol car?

Thanks. :handcuffs:
I am gonna steer clear of saying too much on this one other than generally an officer can handcuff people for his safety while investigating even absent probable cause to arrest so long as he can justify his actions in the interest of officer safety.

I do not mean for that to apply to the situation described above, which would cause me to blow a gasket.
 

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The concept of being "under arrest" has a lot less legal significance than being "in custody" or being "seized." Being "in custody" triggers 5th amendment issues, and maybe 6th amendment issues, depending on the circumstances of the custody. Being "seized" triggers 4th amendment issues. The person's description of his incident would lead me to believe he was "seized" (albeit temporarily) by the police, and that he also was in custody (in that he was not free to go). While he was "in custody," he probably was "under arrest" under the laws of a lot of states (I can't speak to TX law). Because being "under arrest" is more of a state law matter (for things like "false arrest," there are not really federal civil rights issues associated with that (the way there are for being seized and being in custody).

Because being in custody only has 5th amendment implications, and because the guy was not charged with something as a result of the (perhaps illegal) custodial interrogation, the custody may not be actionable.

But, he was seized without a warrant, perhaps in violation of his 4th amendment rights.

Could he successfully sue? Dunno, but it would not be a walk in the park.
 

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I've been in search of a camera system that gets all four viewing angles (North, South, East, and West) that is portable for the car. Also, it needs two separate recordings. Just in case the cops find one of the tapes I have a backup. If anyone knows of a good not so expensive system let me know.

The one system I saw at the gun show would be great for the home.
 
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