Reply To: Why you should never, ever talk to police


I’m subject to pc290 in California and am therefore prone to be considered a suspect if some crime or occurrence takes place in my neighborhood.

I was once approached by a pair of detectives, both donning business cards that read “robbery/homicide”. I let then in. One said to me that a 13 yr old girl sitting at a bus stop had been harassed by a motorist driving a yellow car. I responded that I owned just a black Lincoln and white minivan they saw parked in my driveway. One officer responded right off, “that raises a red flag with me because most people would say ‘I didn’t do it'”. My response was that Hollywood uses real-life experiences when making movies and anytime we see a handcuffed suspect scream, “I didn’t do it”….he’s convicted by the end of the show.

To reinforce my story, I reversed his own, stating that a homeless man had been killed on the property adjacent to the golf course he’d admitted he was at on Saturday. He played along– to maybe reinforce his position–stating that he didn’t do it. “Well see that raises a red flag with me detective because the cashier in the pro shop says you bought orange golf balls and a pack of gum while you were there”.

The point is easy enough to see and the detectives left. On their way up the hill to their car, I shouted from my porch, “why don’t you take pictures of both my vehicles and show them to the little girl?” His response….”I know how to do my f*cking job”.

Feeling pretty good about the experience, I called my lawyer and recounted the tale. He wasn’t impressed. In fact he spun it for my benefit by asking: “Mr. Rivera, how do you know they weren’t there investigating the string of child murders that are taking place in the area?” Stunned, I simply replied that the detectives said they were there over the bus stop incident.

Here’s the lesson. “Mr Rivera, law enforcement is never obligated to tell you the truth. They will say anything to get the information they need”. (He added that if he caught me talking to law enforcement again, he’d keep my retainer and drop me like a hot rock.

Incidentally, a month later I got caught up in a “my space ” dating scam and found myself sitting in a little room at the police department. After 3 long hours, a sex crimes investigator came in to talk. “Unless my lawyer is behind you or you have a deck of cards, this is going to be a really short conversation”.

He responded that that was my right and he left. The charges were dropped 3 days later. Had I spoken to him I’m confident I’d be serving a long sentence for rape….or something.

Lesson learned. Don’t talk to cops! (unless you have them under restraints and need their blood type and family medical history so you can effectively market the parts in their meat sack).