What to Do If You’re Arrested for a Felony in Washington

Being arrested for a felony is a stressful and often overwhelming experience. However, knowing what steps to take can help you protect your rights and improve your chances of a favorable outcome. Here’s a detailed walkthrough of what to do if you’re arrested for a felony in Washington:

Stay Calm and Compliant

It’s natural to feel panicked, but it’s crucial to remain calm. Take deep breaths and stay composed to prevent the situation from escalating. Comply with the officers’ instructions. Resisting arrest or behaving aggressively can lead to additional charges and worsen your situation.

Invoke Your Right to Remain Silent

You have the right to remain silent to avoid self-incrimination. Politely inform the officers that you choose to exercise this right. Apart from providing your name and basic identifying details, refrain from discussing any aspects of your case with anyone until you have legal representation.

Request an Attorney Immediately

Clearly request an attorney as soon as possible. If you cannot afford one, you are entitled to a court-appointed lawyer. Once you’ve requested an attorney, law enforcement is required to cease questioning. Politely but firmly refuse to answer any questions until your attorney is present.

Understand Your Miranda Rights

Upon arrest, you should be read your Miranda rights, which include your right to remain silent and your right to an attorney. Anything you say can be used against you in court. If your Miranda rights are not read to you, inform your attorney as this could impact your case.

Be Aware of Bail and Pretrial Release Options

Shortly after your arrest, you’ll have a bail hearing where a judge will decide if you are eligible for bail and set the amount. Bail allows you to be released from custody until your trial. If granted bail, make sure to understand and comply with any conditions set by the court to avoid additional legal issues.

Document the Details of Your Arrest

As soon as possible, write down everything you remember about your arrest, including the time, location, and the officers involved. Collect any evidence that might support your case, such as contact information of witnesses, video footage, or any discrepancies in the police report.

It’s crucial to have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side. They can guide you through the legal process, build a strong defense, and represent your interests in court.

Facing a felony arrest is serious, but knowing your rights and the correct steps to take can make a significant difference. The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer is here to provide expert legal advice and representation. Contact us immediately if you or a loved one is arrested for a felony in Washington. Your rights and freedom are our top priorities.