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Is it legal for law enforcement officers to lie to someone during an arrest to obtain a statement from that person?

Englewood, CO |

My son was stopped by members of the Sheriff's Department, as well as municipal police officers. They read his Miranda Rights, then told him that if he didn't cooperate with them, they would confiscate his car and he wouldn't get it back. Further, they told him that if he told them what happened, he would go free since the crime was actually committed by his friend who was a passenger in his car at the time.

Attorney Answers 3


Strangely, it is legal for law enforcement officers to lie to someone during an interview or interrogation. However, if the resulting statement, admission or confession is a product of the officers' promise of benefit or threat of coercion, the statement, admission or confession will be excluded from evidence at trial, regardless of proper "Miranda" warnings.

Joshua Sabert Lowther, Esq.

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They can. The issue is what is the effect of that. If your son was arrested his attorney can file a motion to suppress statement.

Attorney Mitchell S. Sexner
Mitchell S. Sexner & Associates LLC /o
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Yes, law enforcement is allowed to lie. Consider an officer working undercover in a drug sting. The officer is lying about who he is, is likely lying about using drugs or reselling them. Similar to you son's situation, cops will split up suspects/witnesses and inform them that the other is pointing the finger at them. Cops will readily admit in trial that they lied as part of a police investigation.

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