We all know the warnings police give to someone before starting an interrogation: the right to remain silent, that anything said can be used in court, the right to a lawyer, and the right to a free lawyer if one cannot be afforded.  Over the years, I have described these words as being written in code.  I’ll explain.

When the police say “you have the right to remain silent,” that is code for “Shut Up!”  They are telling you that they are trying to get information from you that they will use against you.  There is nothing, absolutely nothing, that you can say that will help you.  The police will take anything you say and twist it to fit their agenda.  You are playing their game by their rules; you will lose.

When the police say “you have the right to consult with an attorney before talking to the police,” that is code for “You Need A Lawyer!”  They are not saying that to help them.  They know any lawyer would tell you not to talk to the police.  Listen to them—get a lawyer.  Do it before you talk to them.  After you have talked to them it is too late.

Don’t do it to yourself.  Listen to what the police are telling you when they give you those Miranda warnings.  Understand the code.  Don’t talk to them.  Get a lawyer.  Don’t make things worse for yourself.