One of the most distressing experiences a person can have is watching a loved one being arrested by the police. Often, when this happens, it comes as a complete shock and people very rarely know how to respond or provide their loved one with the best possible support. The first thing to remember is to be polite and respectful to the arresting officers. After all, they’re only doing their jobs and the more cooperative you are, the more likely they will be to give you the information you need. If you ever witness a loved one being arrested, here are some important tips to remember which may enable you to help them.
Find out as much as you can from the police
The police should be able to provide you with essential information which will help you to help your loved one. For example, they can confirm whether or not they are definitely being arrested, where they will be taken, and how much the bond will be set at. You should also take note of the time, date and location of the arrest.
Your loved one should not talk to the police about anything (other than to confirm their personal information) until a lawyer is present and has advised them on how to proceed. If you have the chance to speak to them either before they are taken away or when they are in jail, let them know that you are getting their bond together and/or finding a lawyer for them.
Hire a criminal defense lawyer
You should try to hire a criminal defense lawyer with experience in the type of allegations your loved one is being charged. There are lots of lawyers out there who will have their own areas of special expertise, such as being charged with importing drugs into the UK or theft. The lawyer will be able to advise your loved one about their best course of action and, if they arrive at the station during their police interview, they will be able to interrupt the interview.
Don’t talk about what’s happened on the telephone
If you speak with them on the phone while they are in jail, be sure not to talk about what has happened. All calls will be recorded and neither you nor your loved one want to inadvertently provide the prosecution with information that could hurt your loved one’s defense at a later date.
Arrange payment of their bond
In the majority of cases, people are given the opportunity to pay a bail bond which means they can leave custody until they appear in court. Depending on the amount, you may need to find a bail bondsman to help you source collateral and money which will release your loved one.
Try to remain calm
While you are likely to be feeling stress and anxiety, it is nothing compared to what your loved one is going through. Make sure they know that you are there for them and are doing all you can to get them the right help and get them home.