Being arrested can be an extremely traumatic experience. Different people will handle the situation in various ways. Some individuals might be able to remain composed, while others become extremely agitated.
It is important to remember that people are presumed innocent until proven guilty — and not all arrests are justified. Although it is unlikely that you will face an arrest without committing a crime, it is certainly a frequent enough occurrence to warrant further consideration. Outlined below are some coping mechanisms that can help when facing arrest.
Try to remain calm
Although remaining calm is easier said than done, there are a number of methods that could help. Perhaps the most useful is to focus on your breathing. When anxious, our heart rates can increase alongside our breathing patterns. Breathing is something that we tend to do automatically, therefore we may not know what to do in the event of hyperventilating. Focussing on taking deep breaths can go a long way to improving the situation.
Understand your rights
While you may have to provide officers with information about who you are, you do not need to hold extensive conversations. The U.S. Constitution affords you the right to remain silent and you are perfectly entitled to invoke this right when facing arrest.
If you do take the path of cooperating with officers, being aggressive will not benefit you in any way. In fact, it could result in further charges. Although being arrested, especially when innocent, can be extremely frustrating, it may be in your best interests to remain polite at all times.
It is vital that you remember your legal rights when facing arrest in Virginia. Additionally, you should know that there are options open to you to defend unjustified charges.