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Training role-play #6 - Interaction with the police

Interaction with the police (15 minutes)

Use a short role-play to start off discussion of police powers and your rights. Roleplay: interacting with police police officer approaches activist and tries to get information, ID and search bag, pockets. Let group suggest what the activist's rights are. Speaking to police Points to make:

In general, you are under no obligation to speak to police officers or to answer their questions (certain exceptions, such as when driving...).

Ask if you are under arrest, if not, make it clear you wish to leave, try to walk away.

Right not to be arbitrarily detained or imprisoned.

Right to remain silent.

Remember: it is probably better to say nothing than to lie to the police lying can lead to charges of obstruction. The police are trained professionals and have many techniques for gathering information that may not be obvious to you. Any information you give them can and will be used against you (both in court and outside of court), even seemingly unimportant comments help them to make connections between people and groups in our movements, or to become more familiar with our modes of communication.

Even if, for whatever reason, you decide to talk to the police, do not talk to the police about others let other people decide if they want to share information about themselves with the police.