If you are arrested in Florida, the decision whether to answer any questions is entirely your own. You should give this matter your careful consideration because oral statements, as well as, written statements will be received as evidence in court against you.
If you are offered any inducement to sign a document or if you are threatened, coerced, or forced to sign anything, advise your attorney immediately and the senior police official in charge. If you do not have an attorney, you may ask to see one immediately.
If you are unable to afford an attorney, you have a right to be put in touch with the Public Defender immediately. The Public Defender is a lawyer and is available to give you important legal advice following your arrest. If you are in doubt about whether you should talk with the arresting officer or other law enforcement officers, you should wait until you have spoken with an attorney before giving up your right to remain silent.
When are you under arrest?
You are arrested when law enforcement officers take you into custody or otherwise deprive you of your freedom of movement in any significant way, in order to hold you to answer for a criminal offense. Police officers, under Florida law, are obligated to identify themselves and to advise you that you are under arrest and why, unless circumstances make it impossible for them to do so at that time. You may, in fact, be under arrest even though no one has actually used the word “arrest” or any other comparable word. The fact that you have been deprived of your freedom of movement in some significant manner may amount legally to an arrest. It’s essential to understand criminal lawyer in each state to ensure you stay within the law.