TOP 5 TIPS TO AVOID CONFLICT DURING A STOP AND SEARCH
Know your rights and keep your emotions under control even if you feel you have been stopped unfairly. If you have been unfairly stopped, get a receipt and complain later.
Ask Questions –
A lot of misunderstandings arise because people don’t understand why they are being stopped. The police have a duty to tell you. If they don’t explain or you are unclear about the grounds, just ask for clarification. Remember if you don’t agree, you can always complain later.
‘No comment’ –
Unless you are arrested, you don’t have to disclose any personal information to the police including your name, address or date of birth. So, if you don’t want to answer questions, just politely say ‘No comment’. Remember to be polite.
Do not run – cooperate
Running away will be seen as suspicious behaviour. Cooperate with the search and don’t try to stop the police officer from touching you by pushing their hands away. Do not shout, get verbally abusive or aggressive as this might result in you being charged with a public order offence. Remember you can always complain later.
Audio or visually record the encounter* –
You or a member of the public have the right to audio / video record the stop and search encounter – provided you do not obstruct the search.
If the officers’ take the phone from you – don’t grab it back. Instead politely ask for it back as they do not have the right to keep it.
Try to to get a picture of the badge numbers of the officers present, in case you want to make a complaint later and always ask for a receipt.