3. Writing Statements & Gathering Evidence

Writing your own statement and gathering evidence is important to do as soon as possible after arrest. It will help you build a good case if you go to court, and may also help other defendants or allow you to make a claim against the police at a later date. Be cautious about who this evidence is shared with at this stage, especially online.

Statements

A statement is simply a written account of your experiences: from the lead up to your arrest to after you were released from the police station.

Write in chronological order. Focus particularly on what led up to your arrest, your interaction with police, and any mistreatment in custody.

The sooner you write your statement, the more weight it is likely to carry. Sometimes a case can hinge on tiny details that are easily forgotten! Check that the date is clearly marked on the statement.

Don’t email the statement to us, just keep it safe until solicitors need it (or if you don’t have a solicitor then when you’re in court).

If you’ve been injured, get evidence as soon as possible, including seeing a doctor and getting photos.

Witnesses

Ask anyone you know who witnessed your arrest you to write a statement too. See this page for guidance.

Have you been a witness to fellow arrestees or victims of police violence? If so please let us know, and write a statement as soon as possible.

Key Messages

  • No Comment
  • You do not need to answer police questions, so don’t.
  • No Personal Details
  • You don't have to give details under ANY stop and search power.
  • No Duty Solicitor
  • Use a recommended solicitor with protest experience.
  • No Caution
  • They admit guilt for an alleged offence that might never get to court.
  • What Power?
  • Ask "What power?" to challenge a police officer to act lawfully.

Elsewhere