Choice point 1
Kass Does a Police Interview
Police Station • 2 days later
You have a right to silence and never have to do a police interview unless you want to, but Kassem chose to do one. Was this a mistake?
Kass thinks he can talk his way out of anything. He's been interviewed before for another incident and he wasn't charged, so he thinks he's smarter than the cops.
In this scene, Kassem is being taken into the interview room at the police station to do a recorded interview.
He did not have to do a police interview. It was his choice. You have a right to silence and never have to do a police interview unless you want to. (read more)
Kassem was offered a chance to call a lawyer, but he didn't know who to call. He was informed of his right to silence by police, but chose to do an interview anyway.
It looks like Kassem chose to do an interview because he thinks he can talk his way out of things. Many young people do this when they believe they are innocent.
There are a few really important things you need to know about police interviews:
- You never have to do an interview or enter an interview room by law, you have a right to silence.
- Making a decision to do a police interview, especially when facing a serious charge can have very serious legal consequences. You may want to do it it’s your decision but you should never make that decision without getting legal advice first. (read more)
- If you can’t get legal advice for any reason, you should stay silent until you have had a chance to do so.
Kassem says a lot of things in his interview that will have very serious legal consequences, and he often doesn’t even realise.
Is Kassem making his situation worse by lying to Police?
“They’ve got nothing on me. I'll just answer these questions and leave.”
Kassem is asked where he was at the time of the offence, and says “he was most probably asleep at that time….”
This is the first of a series of lies he tells police, and is what lawyers sometimes describe as a ‘false alibi’.
Kassem is getting himself into a lot of trouble - he has chosen to do an interview, and is now lying to the police although he has no idea how much they already know. They know he was not in bed at this time, so now they know he is a liar!
Lying to the police will never help your situation. In fact, it will make it far worse because you damage your credibility.
This is one of the many reasons why you should never do a police interview without getting legal advice first.
What is the legal significance of Kassem identifying himself in the photos?
“Well, it’s obviously me in the photo. What else would I say? As long as I don’t dog the other boys. That’s all that matters.”
In this scene Kassem is shown a photo of himself and some of the boys in the service station. He is asked whether he recognises anyone in the picture and says “yeah, that’s me”.
By doing so, Kassem has given the police the legal evidence they needed to be able to prove that he is the boy in the photo. He has identified himself, and aed himself (in evidence) to the crime.
Kassem once again doesn’t realise how significant this is. He no doubt answered this question because he thought it was obvious of course it is him! It’s a photo.
Confirming your identity to police in photos or video footage has very serious legal consequences.
This is another reason why you should never make the decision to answer police questions until you have received legal advice.
Is Kassem helping Tee, or making things worse for him?
“I’m getting charged but I don’t want Little Tee getting in trouble too. The cops have a witness that saw Tee in the laneway. I just need to make sure that he doesn’t get charged”
In this scene the police ask Kass whether Tee was acting as a lookout, he waives his right to silence and answers the question.
He tells the police that Tee stayed in the car the whole night, and never stepped out. But by doing this, he is actually confirming to the police that Tee was present.
Kass is trying to get Tee out of it - but he is actually confirming Tee’s identity to the Police, and this leads to Tee being charged.
And the police know that Kass is lying - they have witnesses who saw Tee jump out and yell out to Nella.