The land of the free is in the grip of a pandemic. This pandemic is reaching into every nook and cranny of America. I am not speaking of the Coronavirus I am talking about over policing. Our country founded on the guiding principles of “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” has a police force that kills and imprisons more people in total numbers and per capita than any other nation on the face of the earth.
The swelling number of the murdered and imprisoned are only two of the boils caused by this epidemic. Police murdering innocent civilians and not facing prosecution and, in most cases, not even losing their jobs is one of the more poignant symptoms. But police intimidating and using excessive force on innocent civilians and bullying them into self-incrimination and consenting to searches reaches every race, age, and creed of our society.
Police Departments have obtained guns and vehicles more accustomed to the battlefield than the streets of our communities. Police hide their murderous deeds behind the shield of qualified immunity and are assured job protection by their unions regardless of the heinousness of their deeds. In what other job can an employee murder their customer (after all we pay their salaries) and not only escape justice but also keep their jobs and their pensions? The time has come for a change.
By Your Side Legal Services (BYSLS), the first company to offer legal representation during encounters with law enforcement, announces their crowdfunding campaign at https://igg.me/at/BYSL. The money raised will be used to build an application that connects its clients with lawyers during interactions with law enforcement and to market their services.
When BYSLS clients see blue lights of a police car in their rear-view mirror or they are stopped by a police officer on the street, they will activate the BYSLS Application. The application will connect them immediately with a lawyer who will represent them during the encounter. When the officer approaches, they will hand the officer thier BYSLS membership card.
The membership card will inform the officer that the client is not going to answer any questions and will remain silent based on the rights granted by the 5th Amendment and the client does not consent to a search of their person, vehicle or passengers. The card also informs the police officer that an attorney is on the phone and will speak on their behalf.
The lawyer will then speak to the officer on the client’s behalf and provide representation until the conclusion of the encounter.
Citizens are often unsure of their rights and are under the impression that they are obligated to answer police officers questions. The framers of our constitution provided protections for citizens from over aggressive police action including:
•4th amendment that provides protection from unreasonable searches and seizures
•5Th amendment that provides the right to remain silent
•6th amendment that provides the right to be represented by counsel
Unfortunately, these protections are often thrown away by citizens because they don’t know their rights granted by the constitution or are afraid of the police. Legal representation during encounters with law enforcement will help citizens avoid being bullied into answering law enforcements’ questions and consenting to their searches.