Know your Rights

In Your Home

  • You do not have to let the police in, unless:
    • 1. They have a warrant
    • 2. You have more than 5 people in your house and they suspect that alcohol is being consumed by minors or illegal substances are being used (social host ordinance)
    • 3. It is an emergency situation, such as a person screaming in your house or if the police are chasing someone
  • If you are arrested, police can search the area near by.
    • If you are in a building, this should only be the room you are in.

Stopped For Questioning

  • 1. The police can stop anyone to question them, without a warrant

  • 2. You have the right to refuse to answer questions, but in many cases, it may make the police suspicious of you.

  • 3. Bad-mouthing the police or running away can lead to your arrest.

  • 4. Police can “pat-down” your clothing if they suspect a concealed weapon.
    • You have the right to refuse any other search on your body.
  • 5. Ask if you are under arrest. If you are, they have to tell you why.

Stopped In The Car

  • 1. If you are suspected of Drunk Driving (DUI) and refuse to take a blood alcohol test, such as urine or breathalyzer test, your driver’s license can be suspended.

  • 2. Upon request, you must show them your driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance

  • 3. You have the right to say: “I do not consent to a search”.
    • Your car can be searched without a warrant if the police have probable cause.
  • 4. If you are given a ticket, you must sign it, otherwise you can be arrested

If You Are Arrested/Taken To A Police Station

  • You are legally allowed to remain silent
    • You do not have to tell the police anything.You have the right to talk to a lawyer before the police
  • Ask to see a lawyer
    • If you cannot afford a lawyer, you can get a free one - You can ask the police how to get a free lawyer or contact the UCSB Legal Resource Center
    • Do not make any decisions prior to speaking with a lawyer

General Tips

  • Don’t resist arrest, even if you think that you are innocent.

  • Remember, anything you say or do can be used against you in the court of law.

  • Keep your hands visible to avoid suspicion.

  • Never touch a police officer.

  • After the incident, write down as much as you remember.
    • Such as officer’s name and patrol car #
  • If you are injured, take photographs of the injury.
    • If necessary, seek medical attention first!
  • If you think your rights have been violated, write a written consent with the police department’s supervisor or internal affairs division.

Parental Notification

  • If a UCSB student is arrested or cited for an alcohol or other drug offense in Isla Vista or Goleta:
    • Student will receive a letter of concern from the campus with referral to sources of assistance.
    • Approximately one week later, the parents/guardians of the student will receive a letter of concern containing notification of the student’s citation or arrest.
  • There will be no disciplinary action taken by the campus nor and the arrest or citation will not be part of the student’s disciplinary record at UCSB.

  • Goals:
    • To enlist parental support for helping students with potential behavioral problems
    • To create a safer community environment
    • To help prevent future instances of citations or arrests from happening
  • Check the Know The Laws tab for alcohol related citations and arrests.