Singing the Bite Me Song

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September 25, 2005

Would be nice to have this handy dandy guide on a laminated card to keep in one's pocket...

Neat advice from the American Civil Liberties Union. The PDF version is that handy card format. Heh, the PDF file is named "dwb bust card." DWB, Driving While Black. Although many of us could use this advice, these days. I don't think they even read the Miranda rights anymore. There was a time when we'd all heard them so many times on cop shows we could recite them by heart.

Go download the file! I just had to grab a few of my favorites.

Link: American Civil Liberties Union : Know Your Rights: What to do if You're Stopped by the Police.

Know Your Rights: What to do if You're Stopped by the Police

July 30, 2004

What to do if you're stopped by The Police

To fight police abuse effectively you need to know your rights. There are some things you should do, some things you must do and some things you cannot do. If you are in the middle of a police encounter, you need a handy and quick reference to remind you what your rights and obligations are.

You can photocopy this and carry it in your wallet, pocket or glove compartment to give you quick access to your rights and obligations concerning police encounters.

Click here if you'd like a downloadable version in PDF format.

Think carefully about your words, movement, body language, and emotions.

Don't get into an argument with the police.

Remember, anything you say or do can be used against you.

Keep your hands where the police can see them.

Don't run. Don't touch any police officer.

Don't resist even if you believe you are innocent.

Don't complain on the scene or tell the police they're wrong or that you're going to file a complaint.

Do not make any statements regarding the incident. Ask for a lawyer immediately upon your arrest.

Remember officers' badge & patrol car numbers.



1. It's not a crime to refuse to answer questions, but refusing to answer can make the police suspicious about you. If you are asked to identify yourself, see paragraph 2 above.

2. Police may "pat-down" your clothing if they suspect a concealed weapon. Don't physically resist, but make it clear that you don't consent to any further search.

3. Ask if you are under arrest. If you are, you have a right to know why.

4. Don't bad-mouth the police officer or run away, even if you believe what is happening is unreasonable. That could lead to your arrest.


We all recognize the need for effective law enforcement, but we should also understand our own rights and responsibilities -- especially in our relationships with the police. Everyone, including minors, has the right to courteous and respectful police treatment.

If your rights are violated, don't try to deal with the situation at the scene. You can discuss the matter with an attorney afterwards, or file a complaint with the Internal Affairs or Civilian Complaint Board.

Produced by the American Civil Liberties Union.

September 25, 2005 at 12:40 AM | Permalink


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