How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Joseph Your Own Question
Joseph, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Attorney with significant and substantial experience in multiple areas of law.
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Joseph is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

If a cop tells a family about an arrest that he/she made,

This answer was rated:

If a cop tells a family about an arrest that he/she made, and the family member then tells others including identifying the person arrested, is this unethical or libel per se. The person arrested has not yet even had a court date and has not been convicted of the charges placed on him yet. This is a small town and it feels like a violation of privacy.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer

I'm sorry to hear about your situation and hope I can help.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX my goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

While this is unethical, unfortunately it is not illegal. Arrests are a matter of public record. Additionally, libel or defamation has to be based on a FALSE statement of fact.

If the police officer told the truth, and the family member is relating the truth as was told to him or her by the officer, unfortunately that would be insufficient to constitute defamation. (Take for example, every celebrity who is arrested. Arrest videos and reports regarding the arrest are always released to the media prior to the person even having a court hearing).

If the person had not been arrested, or there is false information on top of the arrest (like the person being drunk when he or she was sober, etc.) that would likely constitute defamation, as long as damages from the defamation could be proven.

I realize the above information is not what you wanted to hear and I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX had better news to give you, but I hope you appreciate an honest and direct answer to your question. It would be unprofessional of me and unfair to you to provide you with anything less.

Please let me know if you have any follow up or clarifying questions as I want to ensure that you are completely satisfied with my service. Definitely contact me if you are contemplating leaving me a negative rating, as I’ll be happy to continue to address your concerns until you are satisfied with my service.

If not, please remember to rate my answer positively so I get paid for my work. It is necessary for you to rate my answer even though you’ve made a deposit or are a subscriber. I only receive compensation for my work if you rate me positively. Otherwise, I receive nothing for assisting you and the website retains your entire deposit.

Thanks and best of luck!

Joseph and 3 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you