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What should I say if I am stopped?

"Why did you pull me over?"

"I'm not discussing my day."

"Am I being detained or am I free to go?"

If you are being detained say: "I invoke the Fifth." and stay silent.

  • If you are asked for physical ID, you do not need to provide it unless you are operating a motor vehicle.

  • In most states, you are required to provide your true name and address.

Identifying information varies but typically includes:

  • Name, address, and explanation of the persons' actions.

  • In some cases, it also includes the persons' intended destination, the person's date of birth (Indiana and Ohio), or written identification if available (Colorado).

  • Ohio does not require the person's intended destination. Ohio requires only name, address, or date of birth. Date of birth is not required if the age of the person is an element of the crime (such as underage drinking, curfew violation, etc.) that the person is reasonably suspected of.

  • Indiana requires either name, address, and date of birth, or driver's license, if the person's possession, and only applies if the person was stopped for an infraction or ordinance violation.

  • Arizona law, apparently written specifically to codify the holding in Hiibel, requires a person's "true full name".

  • Nevada law, which requires a person to "identify himself or herself", requires only that the person state their name.

  • Texas law requires a person to provide their name, residence address, ad date of birth if lawfully arrested and asked by police. (A detained person or witness of a crime id not required to provide any identifying information; however, it is a crime for a detained person or witness to give a false name.) Texas P.C. 38.02

  • In four states (Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, and Rhode Island), failure to identify oneself is one factor to be considered in a decision to be arrested. In all but Rhode Island, the consideration arises in the context of loitering or prowling.

  • Seven states (Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, New Mexico, Ohio, and Vermont) explicitly impose a criminal penalty for non-compliance with the obligation to identify oneself.

  • Maryland requires a person to respond to identification requests if the person is wearing, carrying (open or concealed), or transporting a handgun.

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