Can you designate a lawyer preemptively and in perpetuity ?

Would that be legal ? Profiling someone who chooses to exercise his rights ?

If you were a police chief with such proclivities, I would very much like to have this preemptive protection!! Don’t you think ?

As long as they’re not profiling on the basis of protected class (race, religion, etc.), what law do you think profiling violates? Plus, if they’re watching you more closely, if you’re really doing anything wrong they’ll have the evidence for a warrant before they ask consent, so what protection have you really gained (assuming your plan conferred any protection in the first place)?

Perfectly legal. What law do you think it would violate?

No, I don’t think. First, I think your mistaken in thinking that this affords you any “preemptive protection” at all. Secondly, your attempt to forestall any searches will certainly attract attention to you, and suggest strongly to the police that you have reason to fear that a search would disclose evidence damaging to you. If you weren’t on their radar before you sent your letter, you certainly are afterwards. I think you give yourself much better protection by keeping a low profile, and not going out of your way to attract suspicion.

Well then, what if you wrote up your “I do not now, and never will, consent . . .” notice and publish it in the Legal Notices section of some major newspapers of general public circulation?

That still doesn’t stop you, does it, actually consenting when the occasion arises? After all, if you declared with similar solemnity and publicity that “I do not now, and never will, consent to marry anybody”, do you think you would have irrevocably abandoned the capacity to contract a lawful marriage? No. All you would have done is to state your present intention of never marrying.

If you want to deprive yourself of the capacity to consent to marriage, to searches or to anything else in the future, then inflict a serious brain injury on yourself and hope that (a) it doesn’t kill you, but (b) it does leave so mentally incapacitated as to be incapable of giving a valid consent, and the courts so find. Drastic, I agree, and not without risk. But it’s the only way you’re going to achieve this.

The judiciary is not the same thing as law enforcement. Police officers are not judicial officers, and vice versa. A court has no jurisdiction to consider (much less give effect to) something you send it before any case is actually pending.

Law and Order is relatively accurate as legal dramas go, but it’s not a documentary. The fact that you had a lawyer in the past means very little. Now, if you are under active investigation or indictment and have a lawyer, that’s one thing, but even then the police can generally ask you about other crimes.

For the most part, the onus is on the defendant to notify law enforcement that he is raising his rights.

Then you’ve wasted your money. Are police officers supposed to trawl through local classifieds every time they want to talk to someone?

The police aren’t obligated to keep track of every random message that a citizen sends to someone in the police department, and communicate all of those messages to all of the street officers. Trying to track whatever letters people send would rapidly overwhelm any department, there’s no way that a beat cop could remember several hundred or hundred thousand letters, and you can bet there would be a lot of letters sent if police did track them. So simply from a practical outlook, what you want is completely unworkable.

Why is it unworkable ?

I can consent to be an organ donor - and that consent is directly printed on my driver’s license. I can also not consent - and that can be printed on my driver’s license too.

The police can just go and check (in most places) on their laptop in the car whether my insurance is current on not.

My reasoning in this situation will be - that Officer Krupke coerced Jim to consent by asking him repeatedly to consent.

I see the situation same as Jim refusing to consent first. But then being “asked” by officer Krupke to give consent and fearing for his life giving consent.

He wasn’t asked repeatedly. He was asked once. And there is no evidence in the hypothetical that Jim feared for his life, reasonably or unreasonably. You’re not reasoning; you’re making things up.

For the same reason as UDS’s marriage example: you can always change your mind.

Suppose you’ve ticked the “Do not consent” box and it’s on your driver’s licence that you do not consent to organ donation.

Then one of your close family members is dying of kidney failure and you’re a likely match.

You go to the hospital and say you’d like to be tested to see if you’re a match, because you’re willing to give up a kidney to save your family member.

The hospital isn’t going to look at your driver’s licence and say “Nope, you can’t donate a kidney. You made an irrevocable decision five years ago when you ticked the “Do not consent to donate” box.”

People can change their minds. If an issue of consent to a search comes up, the judge will review all the facts surrounding the alleged consent. Notwithstanding that letter, you can change your mind and consent.

He already said that he did not give consent - he sent that letter. Asking him again is repeatedly asking ! - What am I missing ?

He didn’t send the letter in response to a question. He sent the letter unsolicited. He was asked once.

So you are saying that a citizen can only refuse consent when asked ? So if a citizen is approached by a cop and he says “I do not consent to be searched” even before he is asked for consent - it does not count for not consenting ? If so, can you please give a cite ?

You can make that argument. Most (every) judge would disagree with you. Depending on the reasonableness of the “fearing for his life” part.

If he is approached by a cop, what he says to the cop on that particular occasion probably counts. What he said to the cop five years ago probably doesn’t.

In addition to the point about changing your mind re: organ donation, depending on your state’s laws your signature on the organ donor card may be only advisory anyway; not only can you change your mind, but your next of kin may be able to make a different decision after your demise.

A citizen can only refuse consent in the context of a situation where consent might be required. If he’s approached by a cop and preemptively says he doesn’t consent to a search of his vehicle, sure, that’s fine. Hell, you can keep a printed card with you that says you refuse to consent to any search and just hand it to the officer when he approaches.

Well, as Sartre points out, you have no freedom to choose unless there is a choice to be made. You may have a preference for coffee with cream over black coffee, have you have no choice between black coffee and coffee with cream unless the cafe has both coffee and cream. Likewise, you have no choice about Officer Krupke searching your car until Officer Krupke proposes to search your car.

You can indicate beforehand that you intend to refuse to consent to any or all searches, but even if you have indicated that you are always free to consent when the occasion actually arises.

So even if Officer Krupke is actively aware of your previously-indicated intention - and, in reality, if you have published a notice or sent a round-robin letter he unlikely to be aware of this - if he has a desire to search your car it’s not unreasonable of him to ask for you, in the hope that you will consent. That would be the first and only time of asking, and if you run a legal case on the basis that it was repetitious, was coercive and put you in fear of your life - well, good luck with that. The smart money will be on the state.

Site that it’s not allowed for an officer to ask a question twice?

Better yet, site that it’s now allowed for an officer to ask a question when someone he’s detaining preemptively answers it.

If a cop pulls you over and you say ‘For the record, officer, this car isn’t stolen’ are you saying that later on in the conversation, when the officer finds that your name matches the plates, but the plates don’t match the vehicle, he can’t say ‘am77494, is this car stolen, the plates don’t match’?

Yes, I’ll give you that taking someone into an interrogation room (especially without a lawyer present) and asking him the same question dozens of times might eventually get him to confess to a crime he didn’t commit (watch Making A Murderer), but according to you:

there’s some sort of problem with the officer twice…and not even asking twice, actually only asking once.

Maybe the officer needs to be able to put into his report “I asked him for consent to search his vehicle and he denied” rather than “He told me as soon as I approached the car that he declined any search”. Things that break protocol get questioned later on.
If something, anything went wrong. Anything at all, you had a body in your trunk, you had a gun under your seat and used it that night, you had an open container in the car and got into a wreck later on, anything. Someone is going to ask that officer why he didn’t ask to search your car when it matched the description of a car they were looking for or smelled like booze…when the person told them they couldn’t search before the officer even got to the car, that should raise some flags.

Sometimes consenting to a search can be to your advantage.

Seems there was this guy who was pulled over by the police for going 100 mph in a 60 zone. So the cop comes up to his window and asks to see his drivers license. The guy says he doesn’t have one as it was suspended the last time he had a DUI.

So the cop asks to see the registration for the car which the man replies that the car is stolen and the cars owner is chopped up in bits in the trunk.

Alarmed the cop tells the man to wait there and goes back to his car to call for backup. The cops supervisor, a captain, shows up as part of the reinforcements. The captain asks the driver to see his license which the driver hands over and it’s perfectly valid and checks out clean in their system. Confused the captain asks to see his car registration, again it’s perfectly valid, in the drivers name and clears the system no problem.

So the captain scratches his head, turns to the man and asks him to open the trunk which is perfectly clean with no bodies. Captain doesn’t know what to think now so he says to the man “I don’t quite get it, I was told that you had no license, stolen car and a body in the trunk.” Man gets an exasperated look on his face and says “Yeah I know what you mean, I bet he told you I was speeding too!”