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Connecticut police arrest 200 in arrest warrant “sweep”

A massive arrest in Connecticut provides an opportunity to review basic legal rights.

Connecticut enforcement officers throughout the state served 285 warrants and arrested 197 people wanted for felonies and misdemeanors as part of an arrest warrant "sweep." The arrests included a variety of crimes ranging from traffic violations to larceny.

The massive effort by state police provides an opportunity for those who are facing criminal charges to review some basic rights. Some important reminders include:

  • You do not need to talk to police. Do not be afraid to exercise your right to remain silent. Seek the counsel of a criminal defense attorney before speaking to police. You can also better ensure your legal rights are protected by having an attorney present during a police interview.
  • Do not underestimate the power of the Miranda warning. Police must generally give a Miranda warning in order to use questioning to gather evidence to support criminal charges. A failure to follow this protocol can result in the application of the "fruit of the poisonous tree" doctrine. This legal doctrine makes it illegal for the police to use evidence gathered from questioning that does not follow the Miranda requirements.
  • An arrest is not the same as a conviction. An arrest does not mean guilt. The police can arrest an individual without having enough evidence to convict the accused of a crime. If you are under arrest, do not give up. Build a defense to the charges so that the arrest does not turn into a conviction. Depending on the details of the charges, a conviction can result in additional jail time and monetary penalties. A strong defense can reduce the risk of these penalties.
  • Criminal charges are required. The prosecutors have a limited time period to file charges before they must release the accused after an arrest. The law often requires police to file charges within two to three days.
  • Police must follow protocol to gather evidence. As noted with the discussion on Miranda rights, police officers must follow the bounds of the law in order to gather evidence to support criminal charges. One example involves the area of search and seizure. Officers can only conduct a search and seizure of evidence in certain situations. A failure to follow the rules that govern these searches can result in the gathering of illegal evidence.

As experienced recently by almost 200 people in Connecticut, an interrogation or arrest by the police is an intimidating event. Do not let frustrations get the better of you. Contact an attorney promptly to build a defense and better ensure your legal rights are protected.