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The police come to your home early in the morning to detain your child - What should you do?

As a parent there cannot be anything worse than a police officer knocking on your door in the early morning, asking to speak to your child and then insisting they come down to the station.

In a recent case heard at the High Court, Nottinghamshire Police Force were criticised for their actions in the arrest and detention of a 14-year-old minor from their home at 5.30am.

The judge laid heavy criticism at the police and the particular police officers’ approach having also observed the timing of the arrest and “that the arrest of a 14 year old boy was tied to the convenience of a particular officer's shift.”

In addition, the child had also been held in a cell designed for an adult detainee. The parent of the child had requested to bring them in at a more reasonable time and on a voluntary basis.

If the police do come to your home, we suggest the following;

  • Most Importantly - Stay Calm.
  • Ask the officers the purpose of their visit and if required ask them (if they haven’t done so already) to activate their body worn camera.
  • Once you have established why they are at your home ask why it would be necessary to arrest your child and could you not bring your child to the police station at a later time for a voluntary interview. You will need to explain to the officer why you think this is in the best interest of the child.
    This will also assist you in securing legal representation prior to the interview.
  • Consider whether it may help allowing the police to search selective parts of your home if you are asked, such as your child’s bedroom or areas the police have mentioned of interest. The police can obtain a search warrant if needed.

Always remember:

  • An arrest must be lawful
  • The age of the suspect (a minor) must be considered and their welfare taken into account including alternatives to an arrest.
  • If there is a need to search the premises (without an arrest) you will be asked to cooperate otherwise a search warrant will need to be obtained.

At Noble Solicitors, we represent clients at Police Stations, Magistrates’ Courts, and at the Crown Court and every member of our team has a wealth of expertise. Should you or a member of your family find themselves in need of assistance call 07000 818283.

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