Legal Brain Tattoo: “If You Don’t Know, Don’t Go!”

Posted by Corey L. Scott | Mar 13, 2023 | 0 Comments

People who are accused of a crime enjoy several rights under the U.S. Constitution's Sixth Amendment. These include the right to a speedy and public trial, the right to a lawyer, the right to an impartial jury, and finally, the right to know who the accusers are and the nature of the charge and evidence against them.

The last one, i.e. the right to be made aware of the charge, is often overlooked. Police officers can come to knock on an accused's door asking them to come down to the station and cooperate with an investigation. They might even present themselves as allies to get the accused's side of the story, which they later use to implicate them.

Unfortunately, it happens. But people can protect themselves by knowing their Sixth Amendment rights and tattooing this into their brains: “if you don't know, don't go!”


“If You Don't Know, Don't Go”

Police have the obligation to inform an accused about the charges and evidence against them, as well as who their accusers are. In the same way, a criminal defendant has a right to clarify why they are being asked to head down to the station to participate in a police interrogation.

If the police don't inform the accused of the charges against them, the latter can refuse to cooperate.


Consequences of Not Knowing What You Are Charged With

It's incredibly important for defendants to exercise their right to be informed of the charges against them. If they are unaware of it and head to the station, they are putting themselves in a situation where they can implicate and incriminate themselves. They can even be detained by the police without question, even if they voluntarily came down to participate in the investigation.

Cooperating with the police without exercising basic Sixth Amendment rights can put a defendant in great harm. So if you don't know, don't go.

About the Author

Corey L. Scott

Corey L. Scott, was born and raised in East Chicago, Indiana. Upon graduation from East Chicago Central High School, Corey attended Indiana State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminology.  Upon graduation, Corey accepted a position with the Marion County Superior Court, Juvenile Division where he served with distinction for the next nine years, eventually being promoted to Director of the Youth Counseling Department. Pursuing his dream of becoming an attorney, Corey attended the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis.  While in law school, Corey was an Indiana Council on Legal Education Opportunity (ICLEO) fellow and participated in Moot Court competitions.  He also worked in the Marion Superior Court, Criminal Division as a bailiff and research assistant to the Honorable Tanya Walton Pratt, who serves as a Judge on the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. Corey also served as an internship law clerk to the Honorable Judge, Margret G. Robb, at the Indiana Court of Appeals. Finally, upon graduation from law school, Corey had the distinct honor and privilege to serve as a law clerk to the Honorable Justice, Robert D. Rucker, who sits on the Indiana Supreme Court. Corey then became an associate with Mike Norris Law Office, where he specialized in bankruptcy law with a main concentration on working to assist families obtain a fresh start through Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  Still a young attorney, Corey then served as a public defender at the Marion County Public Defender Agency.  In this position, Corey gained invaluable trial experience by defending clients in a wide range of matters from misdemeanors to serious felonies on a daily basis.  It was also during this time that Corey discovered his passion for representing and serving "everyday people." An entrepreneur at heart, Corey established the Law Office of Corey L. Scott, P.C.  Since then, he and his staff have served the greater Indianapolis community and surrounding counties in several legal disciplines including: Bankruptcy, Criminal Defense and Family Law.  In keeping with his vision, Corey L. Scott, P.C., is a client focused, results oriented general law practice that endeavors to provide legal solutions for "everyday people" charged with a crime, dealing with financial crisis or going through a difficult divorce. Corey has also been active serving the greater Indianapolis community by participating in pro bono programs such as "Ask a Lawyer," the "Modest Means" panel program which allows individuals to afford legal counsel at a fraction of normal rates, Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic and the Heartland Pro Bono Council program. Corey is a proud member of the Indianapolis Bar Association, Indiana Bar Association, American Bar Association, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.


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