When you are stopped by police, whether in a public place or in your vehicle, you have certain rights, but you also have to follow certain rules. And just like you, the officer has certain rights and rules too. It is okay to not know these rules and rights, but important to learn them in the case that a cop ever stops you. Continue reading to learn about “cop stops” and how long police can detain you without making an arrest.
Cops are allowed to stop anyone for a certain period of time without arresting them, for purposes of determining whether or not a crime is being or was committed. Although law enforcement can stop a person and detain them without arrest, they cannot detain them for an unreasonable amount of time or indefinitely without making an arrest and filing charges. This violates our constitutional right against unreasonable searches and seizures. But “when” and “for how long” a cop can stop you without making an arrest is a little ambiguous since it depends on the particular circumstances of the encounter.