Can police hold a person if they have children?

Lets say a single mother gets arrested for something at around 1 pm. Her kids come home at 3 and she has to be there.

I’ve heard of cases where they got people like this to sign confessions just so they can get home to their children.

So my question is if a suspect has children that might be in danger if left alone, can they still hold them for questioning? If so are they then responsible for the children’s safety?

In such circumstances, a relative (or possibly a non-relative like a neighbor or regular babysitter) would be called to pick up the children, or CPS will be sent out to pick them up.

Great, so the mother will remain silent about her kids out of fear the kids will automatically be picked up by CFS and never returned. OTOH, it does give the police another leverage - sign a confession or you’ll never see your kids again. IIRC, this was the threat used by Texas police when they stole a couple’s money during a traffic stop and made them sign an agreement not to contest the seizure.

I imagine they’ll let CPS know…

Since mother is a suspect, they will likely not let her see the kids and call CPS right away

Well I got pulled over on the Interstate once for speeding and I had my kids in the car and I think I was at that magical number over like 23 miles per hour over the speed limit where they can arrest you on the spot if they want. I admit it I shouldn’t have sped when the kids were in the car and I feel bad about it but anyway the cop said something to me like if I didn’t have my kids with me he would have arrested me but instead he just gave me a ticket or a warning I don’t remember, I think he just didn’t want the trouble and drama of dealing with the kids.

yes. children are not pawns nor are they a “get out of jail free” card.

This scenario actually happens all the time.

Sometimes the suspect is lying about kids being at home alone in an attempt to use it to be let go. This is why charges like obstruction get piled on as well.

Local mother discovers this one weird trick to avoid being arrested

Police HATE her

Well thing is she might be innocent but if she signs a confession then she is found guilty and even if she never has to serve time, the consequences can cause her to lose on job opportunities and even get kicked out of public housing.

The poor always get screwed.

A few months ago, a woman around the corner from me was driving home with a few kids in the car when she noticed someone following her. She pulled off the main road to try to lose the guy and also called for her husband to meet her. But before he got there, she was swarmed by cop cars (the guy following her was in an unmarked police car) and ordered out of the car. (I think they had guns drawn but may be remembering this incorrectly.) She was ordered to GET OUT OF THE CAR!!! with her HANDS IN THE AIR!!! and GET DOWN ON THE GROUND!!!. Her kids tried to get out of the car too, but they were ordered to GET BACK IN THE CAR!!!

Anyway, after they satisfied themselves that she wasn’t whoever they were looking for they let her go. The kids were traumatized (the oldest two girls - 12 & 14 - are good friends of my daughters) and frightened of cops since then. Although last I heard the cops offered them a tour of the police station as some sort of make-up gesture.

Basically, there’s no ordinary excuse that prevents the cops from arresting or detaining you. You can’t just say “I feel sick” or “I have kids” and get out of a traffic stop, questioning, or arrest, if you could then actual dangerous people would use that excuse every time. The cops are responsible for the children’s safety, they will normally call CPS to hold the kids if there’s not a relative or babysitter on hand to take them.

Contrary to rumor CPS doesn’t permanently take kids unless there is something really bad going on, but people believe that they will so unfortunately it can be leverage in getting a confession.

Why would signing a confession let them go home to see their kids? Wouldn’t they be arrested? Or do you mean the suspects think that signing a confession will let them go home to see kids?

If it’s a misdemeanor and the punishment is just a fine (say, $200) then the suspect might decide it’s worth it to just confess and pay the fine so they can go home.

I’ve heard similar stories where the suspect is told “You’re being charged with [A] which is punishable by 30 days in jail and we’re gonna hold you for 24 hours before you even get to see a judge, or you can plead guilty to the lesser charge of ** which is punishable by a $500 fine and we’ll let you go home right now.” The suspect often decides that paying $500 and going home is better than spending the night in jail and being late for work tomorrow, possibly losing their job. They may be totally innocent but they don’t have the time to waste on waiting to see the judge and the money to waste on hiring a lawyer.

Ah, makes sense.

What if you’re a pianist on the way to a concert?

Well, if you’re a US Senator or Representative, the cops can’t arrest you on your way to or from work except for Treason, Felony, or Breach of the Peace.

Only if your name is Dave.

In a musical emergency, you would leave your children with the cop as collateral.

I suspect a reference is being made to something… Reference?

(Hate to be left out of a joke…)