Do's and Don'ts Following an Arrest

If you are ever arrested, you need to understand that what you do during and after the arrest can have a direct — and sometimes adverse — effect on the outcome of your case. The following list of what to do, and what not to do, after an arrest can help you avoid inadvertently damaging your case:


Ask for an attorney. The U.S. Constitution gives you the right to have an attorney if you are arrested. Don’t worry that asking for an attorney will make you look guilty. Talking to the police without an attorney can have disastrous consequences. State clearly that you want an attorney present during an questioning by police. Once you ask, they cannot continue to question you. Do not volunteer any information until you have spoken with an attorney.

Call your attorney first. Your first instinct may be to call a bail bondsman to get you out of jail. However, you should call your attorney first, since he or she may be able to get the bail amount reduced or eliminated, which can save you thousands of dollars.

Give your attorney every detail of your arrest. The police do not always follow the right protocol for every arrest, so be sure to give your attorney every detail involved in your arrest while it is fresh in your memory.


Resist arrest. Even if you think the police have no reason to arrest you, do not resist the arrest. If you do, additional charges could be brought against you for resisting.

Agree to any tests. Talk to your attorney before you agree to any tests, including field sobriety tests, blood alcohol tests or polygraphs. While Texas law requires you to submit to a blood or breath test if you are arrested for a DWI, be sure to speak with your attorney so you understand the consequences of refusing.

Consent to a search. Police must have a search warrant or probable cause to conduct a legal search of your property or home. If they ask you if they can search, they probably don’t have either one. Talk to your lawyer first before consenting to any search.

Talk about your case to anyone other than your attorney. Making statements about your arrest to people other than your attorney could lead to those statements being used against you at trial.

Whether you are facing a serious federal white-collar prosecution, a state murder charge, or misdemeanor charges, The Cogdell Law Firm has the experience, knowledge and reputation you want for your legal team. When results matter most, contact Dan Cogdell at (713) 426-2244 or