Keep this card handy! If you have a police encounter, you can protect yourself.

  • Be polite and respectful. Never bad-mouth a police officer.
  • Stay calm and in control of your words, body language and emotions.
  • Don’t get into an argument with the police. Remember, anything you say or do can be used against you.
  • Keep your hands where the police can see them.
  • Don’t run. Don’t touch any police officer.
  • Don’t resist even if you believe you are innocent.
  • Don’t complain on the scene or tell the police they’re wrong or that you’re going to file a complaint.
  • Do not make any statements regarding the incident.
  • Ask for a lawyer immediately upon your arrest.
  • Remember officers’ badge & patrol card numbers. Write down everything you remember ASAP.
  • Try to find witnesses & their names & phone numbers.
  • If you are injured, take photographs of the injuries as soon as possible, but make sure you seek medical attention first.
  • If you feel your rights have been violated, file a written complaint with police department’s internal affairs division or civilian complaint board.

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