If you encounter an officer attempting to arrest you or search your vehicle or person, the steps you take could limit the availability of evidence against you. Knowing your rights in particular situations could keep you out of jail and help you avoid fines and other penalties.
Sometimes an understanding of the law becomes a powerful tool in your favor.
The Right to Remain Silent
The organization Texas NORML says that during a traffic stop an officer cannot compel you to speak about certain information. You can exercise your right to remain silent by clearly stating this intention. This means you do not have to answer questions about where you came from and even where you live. You do not have to answer citizenship questions except in certain jurisdictions such as airports and border crossings.
At this time, you do not have to consent to a search for your person or your vehicle. While this might not necessarily stop a search, it does help you retain certain legal rights in a later court proceeding.
The Right to Make a Phone Call
Texas NORML states that in the case of an actual arrest, the officer must at some point allow you to make a phone call. If you call an attorney, this conversation entitles you to privacy. If you call another individual, authorities do have the right to listen to that conversation.
Any time the police suspect you of illegal drug use or possession, you should know your rights. Knowing about protections under the 4th Amendment and prohibitions against illegal search and seizures could lead to better outcomes.