Arrests After Holidays
There always seem to be many more arrests of young persons about two or three weeks after the Christmas holidays, March Break, or the summer holiday. Police officers have been away and more importantly schools have been closed making it more difficult for police to interview young witnesses. Young people are often interrogated (or invited in for an interview) because a friend or acquaintance has implicated them. In such circumstances it is very important for a young person or a parent to contact a lawyer for basic advice BEFORE bringing the adolescent into the police station.
A parent needs to obtain legal advice about their own legal obligations or lack thereof in respect of the police. Does the parent, for example, have any obligation to return the call from the police officer or to keep an appointment that has been already booked at the police station? A parent needs to obtain legal advice about what they should say to their child prior to an interview. A parent should not in any way obstruct the police but the parent needs to know what parental advice they can give to their child before the child has contact with the police.
Often the answers you need can be obtained by a free phone call to me, Stephen Biss, at 905-273-3322. I may suggest that you need to book a one hour appointment @ $200 plus HST so that I can speak to your child directly. A lawyer, like me, can prepare your child for any interaction with the police, if the child is arrested. Police interrogations can be long and complex and may use psychological techniques on your child that are designed to break down the child's reluctance to make a statement.
It is very important that your child, know in advance, his or her rights to parental advice, parental presence, legal advice, and legal presence during interrogation. It is very important that your child understand that he or she is under no obligation to verbally or on paper waive his or her rights. Your child needs to know about 24 duty counsel available on arrest.