Perform a citizens arrest
Edited by Ephraim, Charmed, Maria, Eng
This article will be on how a person can successfully make a citizen's arrest in their country. A citizen's arrest is basically when a civilian takes on the act of a police officer in order to subdue a person who is breaking the law. Civilians are told that they have the power to make a citizen's arrest but most do not know of how to effectively perform this action successfully. A citizen can do this by getting a hold of a perpetrator and holding them off until a police officer arrives on the scene to take over the situation. The perpetrator must break a serious crime in order for it to be considered a citizens arrest. Following these steps will ensure that you are going about making the arrest the right way and what to do in the case that you find yourself in a situation.
- 1Witnessing a crime is the first step to making a citizen's arrest.In order for you to make a citizen's arrest you will need to witness a crime being committed personally and not by hearing of a crime. In addition you will need to witness this crime as it is happening and not when it is over for you will need to provide all the facts and witnessing something that has already happen may prove to be a mistake for it may not be a crime at all. By witnessing you will be able to prove the police with probable cause but this can only be done by witnessing a crime in its entirety from the beginning to the end. You will be the proof of the crime as not only providing probable cause but also a reasonable belief in order to have that person fully convicted of the crime. You will also need to provide the police with information about what crime was being committed? What you actually witnessed which caused you to being suspicious that a crime was being committed? What evidence can you provide to link the person to the crime that was committed?Advertisement
- 2Assess what has happened during this crime and if you want to pursue the criminal who has committed the crime at hand.You can either make the decision to get the perpetrator or let the perpetrator go either way you can be useful to the cops about the crime that was committed but by catching the criminal you also help the police from having to find the perpetrator which in turn can stop another crime from occurring later down the road. But you will have to decide whether or not this crime was serious for it is not a serious crime then it more than likely will not be worth pursuing the perpetrator and you could actually just call the crime into the police. Also consider whether or not you are willing to put your reputation at stake from catching a law suit over apprehending the person wrongfully for they might have not committed a crime at all, so at this point you will need to ensure that this person has without a doubt committed a crime before pursuing them at all. Consider if the person you are willing to pursue is armed and will cause harm to you if you try to pursue the perpetrator yourself for you are not fully equipped to take on this action by yourself at all. These things are points that you will need to figure out in a quick manner for this situation will be gone in seconds if you do not think quickly but ensure that you are ready for the task at hand for not being ready can cause a big problem for you and the situation.Advertisement
- 3Approach the criminal and let them know that you are making a citizens arrest, you have to make sure that you say it clearly so that they can hear your statement.Also ensure that you say it directly to them so that they can know that you are talking to them and cannot make a mistake that you were directing the order to anyone else besides them. While telling them that they are under a citizens arrest also tell them the reason that you are putting them under a citizens arrest for the crime that they have committed. It is highly important that you tell them the reason that you are placing them under arrest, if you do not have a cause for the arrest to tell to them then you cannot successfully make the arrest for you do not have probable cause if you cannot call them out on the crime that they have committed.
- 4Apprehend the perpetrator without using excessive force it is up to you to make the most non-life threatening arrest attempt on the perpetrator .If you use excessive force on the perpetrator then you yourself can be facing charges for making an arrest with excessive force so do your best to apprehend the suspect with as little force as possible. Once you have gotten the suspect in your possession you will need to tie them up in order to hold them somehow but it has been said that you are not to use handcuffs on the suspect at all but any other means of holding them violently will result in a charges filed against you also so be careful when apprehending the suspect. The use of force is not worldwide for there are different degrees of force that you can use in every state so understand that the rules do not apply to everyone the same when trying to figure out what classifies as too much force to use when apprehending a suspect. DO your best to judge the amount of force by how the suspect is acting during the arrest, let the situation dictate exactly how you go about apprehending the suspect. For example if you are in pursuit of the suspect it is reasonable for you to pull them down to the grown, it is unreasonable for you to attack them while they are already on the ground and subdued. Do not use any type of lethal force unless you have no choice deeming it (self-defense) so be careful when approaching the suspect for it can be a life or death situation.
- 5Call the police once you have the suspect tied up and subdued to the point where they will not be able to get away but when you are in fact safe as well for you do not want to call the police with the suspect not tied up properly so that you are safe when on the phone with the police.By no means should you try to bring the suspect to your local police department for they can get off the charges by using false imprisonment so the best option is for you to call the police so that they can transport the suspect if necessary.
- 6Get your story straight for when the police arrives you will need to tell them of that you witnessed in its entirety leaving no detail out of the story at all which can compromise your arrest.The police will ask you to give a full statement in this statement ensure that you tell the police everything that happened from when you witnessed the crime till now so it can paint a clear picture for the police officer to understand that you are telling them. Aside from the details of the arrest also include the type of force you used in order to apprehend the suspect.Advertisement
- If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.