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Alex J. Esq.
Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
Category: Criminal Law
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Can police deny a person legal representation if said person

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Can police deny a person legal representation if said person is being questioned by police but not under arrest?  A friend who recently lost her husband in a house fire went to the police station with her son/attorney.  Police refused to allow the attorney to be with her during questioning.  The interrogation lasted two and a half hours.


Alex J. Esq. :

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Alex J. Esq. :

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Alex J. Esq. :

Can you please tell me what happened and how did police deny you legal representation?

Customer:

Hello, I am here

Alex J. Esq. :

Can you please tell me what happened and how did police deny you legal representation?


Customer:

As I noted my friend was not allowed to have an attorney present (her son) when questioned.

Alex J. Esq. :

When your friend was approached or questioned by the police, did your friend demand to consult with his attorney and to have the attorney present?

Customer:

Yes, she went to the police station with her son who is an attorney. She needed a police report for the insurance company to settle the estate of her husband who died in the house fire. The police threatened to arrest her son if he did not leave.

Alex J. Esq. :

Well, was your friend suspected of any criminal activity?

Customer:

Apparently, since they questioned her for over two hours about the fire.

Alex J. Esq. :

Well, your friend did not have to talk to the police, if she was not under arrest and could have simply left.

Alex J. Esq. :

Or she could have advised police officers that she would not make any statements, unless she has her attorney present with her.

Alex J. Esq. :

Generally, in a situation such as you describe, her son would have a conflict of interest, due to his potential interest in this matter and would not be able to legally represent his mother.

Alex J. Esq. :

Does this make sense?

Customer:

Yes

Alex J. Esq. :

So, if your friend feels that she was not treated with courtesy and respect, she can file a formal complaint with the police department's chief against any specific officers who she feels have mistreated her, but generally there would not be any type of legal recourse under the facts you have described.

Alex J. Esq. :

Do you have any related follow up questions?

Customer:

Yes, if she had a defence attorney who was representing her and not her son would the police have allowed the attorney to be present?

Alex J. Esq. :

If the attorney formally states that he is representing this friend, the police would generally allow her attorney to be present and if they did not, then the attorney would advise her to simply leave and not to give any statements, since she was not under arrest.

Alex J. Esq. :

Does this make sense?

Customer:

Yes, but then she cannot settle the estate and pay the bills.

Alex J. Esq. :

Her attorney would be able to make sure that police does take any appropriate report related to this matter.

Alex J. Esq. :

I suspect, that the son was either to emotional or might have been in some way hostile to the police and this what have caused this issue.

Alex J. Esq. :

Does this make sense?

Alex J. Esq. :

It is very easy to get overly emotional when it comes to representing close family, that is why it is never advised of any attorney to do...even when there is no direct conflict of interest.

Customer:

yes, can you further explain what taking any appropriate report means?

Alex J. Esq. :

That means, if there is any information that has to be reported to the police and falls within reportable information, the police would have to make the report.

Alex J. Esq. :

Does this make sense?

Customer:

Yes, you have been helpful thanks.

Alex J. Esq. :

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