General Question

Enforcer's avatar

Officers: Have you EVER lied or know a fellow officer who lied to make a case?

Asked by Enforcer (281points) August 16th, 2010

I don’t mean lying as in “Tell us what we need to know, it will be easier that way” or “We have you on tape” when you don’t just to get a confession. All those would be perfectly legal.

Have you or your fellow officers ever lied to justify probable cause. A common lie I hear about is “I smelled marijuana” or “I smelled alcohol on his breath” as justification to search the vehicle when the person was never drunk or high.

Another lie I hear about is an officer who finds drugs and or paraphernalia in a locked glove box, yet doctors the report to say he found it under the center console or other perfectly legal place to search (Some states it is perfectly legal to search it anyway, but for arguments sake assume this is a state that does not allow searching there).

I understand I have the right to deny a search, but I am constantly told that the officer will “find a way” to search you i.e. make up something.

Have you or your fellow officers ever gone as far as to hold up such a lie under oath in a court of law?

Please be honest. If it makes you feel better make another account. This is not an attack on law enforcement. I just want to know if my civil rights really meaningless in real life. Are most cops honest and stay within the bounds and constraints of the law?

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12 Answers

RareDenver's avatar

I’m sure the confessions will come flooding in

Enforcer's avatar

This is anonymous and it’s the internet. I’ve never been in the situation but I want to be prepared for it if I ever am. Every lawyer I have spoken to has told me “exercise your rights.” Everyone on the street I have spoken to say your rights mean nothing, it is your word against theres, etc…

Watch this video:

I don’t know who to believe. Is paper law different than real law?

ShiningToast's avatar

Interesting question, but I don’t think we have many cops here, apart from John Pennington.

john65pennington's avatar

I never lied under oath in a court room. i have told lies to suspects, in order to achieve the truth. the Supreme Court gives police officers this authority. i once pretended to be a priest, in order for this subject to tell me the truth about a burglary he committed. it was upheld in criminal court.

AnonEGrrl's avatar

Frankly, I think what @john65pennington did is wrong. Lying about being a clergyman seems worse than other types of lies, which I know have been upheld in court. So, bottom line, if arrested, never trust anyone about anything. The only words out of your mouth should be, “I want my lawyer.”

It’s too bad. It certainly makes me less inclined to cooperate with police.

wilhel1812's avatar

@AnonEFrrl I see your point, but what do you think about undercover operations?

Enforcer's avatar


Yes, but what John65 did is legal and I have no problem with him doing that. He is playing the game by the rules.

What I was inquiring about were ILLEGAL lies, such as “I smelled alcohol on his breath” in order to justify probable cause to detain the suspect where upon frisking marijuana was found and he was arrested and on and on…. If he did not lie about the alcohol the detainment would have been unjustified as REASONABLE SUSPICION is required to detain. Blown taillights, speeding, or no seat belt ALONE does not constitute this reasonable suspicion. Alcohol on the breath does.

Another may be “I saw a baggie of marijuana when the suspect opened the glove” when there really was no baggie as reason to search the car and find other contraband elsewhere.

Those are the lies I am referring to, not legal lies. He seemed to have answered my question. Would another cop care to chime in?

john65pennington's avatar

AnonEGrrl, sorry my answer hit you the wrong way. please continue to trust the police. this new ruling, by The Supreme Court, had just come out and we had just arrested this man on another burglary. he was a hardcore criminal, but we knew he was very religious. and yes, i played the part and it worked. my thinking here is i will do whatever it takes to arrive at the truth as long its not illegal or immoral. it has worked for me for 44 years.

CrankMonkey's avatar

Courts generally make determinations about civil rights. Since you have no control over how police will act, your best bet is to be polite and respectful. If you think it’s in your best interest, then assert your rights. For example, if you are being questioned as a suspect you may request a lawyer to represent you. If police think you’re guilty, nothing you can say is likely to change their mind.

woodcutter's avatar

all i know is, never go down to the police station if requested to “just answer a few routine questions”. Soooo many people have willingly done that and were not allowed to leave. When they ask to come inside your home to talk,,,just conduct the talk in the driveway or porch. In most cases they can’t legally go inside unless invited, sort of like vampire lore. better yet you can always not say anything. A well trained interrogator can get the average person to say stuff they had no intention of saying. It’s what they do.

Harrence's avatar

Time after time, evidence has been discovered revealing LE personal fixing evidence that
incriminate a felony on person motivated by their race that is usually Afro-American.
So sad we live in a so called demacracy filled with persons that hold the keys of freedom
or life behind bars. Many of these cases revealing the cruelty of LE results in the
exoneration of persons – after several years of incarceration. Perhaps this may be one
reasons the Muslim World doesn’t want Western Demacracy and fights it all any cost.

Worked at a criminal division of a municipal setting once. A criminal lawyer told me
there were certain cases he would not take because of in his words,” I don’t want the
police killing me,” Too many cases reveal that LE are bullies.

Harrence's avatar


Furthermore, it’s been proved LE works under a “CODE OF SILENCE,” which means
no matter how wrong they are, an LE never speaks out against wrongdoing by
fellow officers.

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