After the Bang: What To Do When the Police Arrive

You were just the victim of a traumatic incident, and the flash of red and blue lights is making it hard to concentrate on the police officer’s questions. After the worst happens, you won’t have the time or mental energy to come up with a plan. So, the time to prepare is now.

In previous videos, we’ve addressed what to do after the bang. Remember your 5-step 911 call? The imperative information you must communicate to the 911 operator includes your name, location, services needed, and a defensive statement, such as you were the victim of a crime. Then hang up and call an attorney before police arrive.

But what happens next?

Listen to Police Instructions

First, listen to police instructions. It’s common for the police to handcuff you and your assailant until they have a better idea about what happened. Even though you were acting in self-defense, the police may not know that right away. Police are trained to secure the scene first, which means they’re going to disarm you if you have a gun on you when they arrive. Do not reach into your pockets for your identification unless instructed to do so. You don’t want the police to think you’re reaching for a weapon.

Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

Next, exercise your constitutional right to remain silent. If you had the chance to speak to an attorney before police arrive, you may be comfortable in making a statement based on the advice of counsel. But if you have not discussed the incident with an attorney, you should simply say that you were the victim of a crime, and that you’re exercising your right to remain silent and your right to an attorney. Do NOT make any further statements to law enforcement and do not answer their questions. Police are not on the scene to prove your innocence. They are there to investigate a crime and collect evidence that can be used against you for criminal charges.

Seek Medical Assistance

Finally, if you or someone else was injured, tell the police you need medical assistance. This will have the added benefit of giving you an opportunity to organize your thoughts. Remember, the EMS personnel talk to police as well. Do not give EMS any more information than is needed to treat your wounds. Do not explain the incident to anyone except your attorney.

Remember these steps if you’re ever forced to act in self-defense. If you have any further questions, call U.S. LawShield and ask to speak to your Independent Program Attorney.

First Aid for Gunshot Wounds 2A Institute

Comment section

5 comments on “After the Bang: What To Do When the Police Arrive

  1. I am a retired police officer. This is excellent advice. The next call after the 911 call should be to an attorney. He will discuss with you if you should make a written statement and if so, not put anything in it that could incriminate you.

  2. I am a retired law enforcement officer. U.S. and Texas LawShield provides excellent advise for anyone involved in a shooting incident, and I feel very comfortable and secure with their comments and advice. My advise is to strictly follow their information and guidance. It can save you considerable grief and agony and allow your legal representative to better and more expeditiously assist you.

  3. I keep a little checklist that gives me the key steps when talking to 911: Give your name, location, say you are the victim of a crime, say whether you need police or EMS or both, say your race, height and what color clothes you are wearing, then add once more that you are the victim of a crime. Then, no matter what the dispatcher says, hang up. All that was recorded. And IMMEDIATELY call your US Law Shield attorney. When cops arrive, don’t sign anything, don’t waive your rights, and don’t say anything the lawyer didn’t specifically tell you to say.

  4. I appreciate all the advice including Mack’s post.
    A wallet card with “What to do after the bang” information along with phone numbers for Lawshield as well as place for personal contact numbers would be helpful. All the info in one place.

  5. I love that this advice is available. As a first responder myself, I see the confused mental state of almost every single citizen in any incident, once all the bright and loud vehicles arrive. Its great to have resources for them to better prepare themselves for whatever may come.

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