People Share Questions Police Officers Ask That Can Get You In Trouble
Lights flash in your rear-view mirror and your stomach drops past your knees into your ankles. It's the worst feeling, not knowing what the officer pulling you over is going to say. However, police are for the most part highly trained and inquisitive minds, and the questioning they lead with may be meant to trip you up and expose yourself. Reddit user, r/kris6689, wanted to know about your best run-ins with the law when they asked:
Ok Reddit, What are some Clever questions asked by cops to get you in trouble?
Start With The Classics
Do you know why I pulled you over?
Would you like to incriminate yourself?
Never Say Yes
I was once pulled over for not wearing a seat belt even though I clearly was. He then asked, "Are you calling me a liar?".
Cool. I say "yes" and I don't know what kind of trouble I am in. I say "no" and I get a ticket even though I am wearing a seat belt.
I just replied with "I am wearing a seat belt." and of course he wasn't happy about that either. I just don't like his initial question to which there is no correct answer.
Making You Confess
Not really a question, but they'll casually mention going to get fingerprints or something in hopes that you'll say "ok, fine! It was me!"
I know a guy who fooled everyone. He wrecked his car and then tried to claim his car was stolen and the thief crashed it. He made it believable. I believed him. All our friends believed him.
The cop had doubts and mentioned that he'd dust the inside of his car for prints. The guy buckled and admitted.
I later asked why. "Because he was going to get my fingerprints."
I replied "well, no sh-t. It's your car. Of course your fingerprints are there."
Cover Up The Cracks
The most common technique is just to ask the same questions over and over and record the answers. Typically you don't respond the same way every time and eventually, if you're trying to hide something, cracks will appear in your story.
Better just to shut up.
It's Not What You Did, But What You Thought
Police officer got me pretty good. Pulled me over at a speed trap. And after a series of questions asked if I thought I could have been speeding and I said yeah probably. And he wrote on the ticket
"Admitted to speeding"
Read Between The Lines
If they ask you to recite the alphabet backwards, the answer they're looking for is "I can't even do that sober."
I'm From the Big City
"You're not from around here, are you?"
Have heard of some rural cops using this on people, making up some b.s. local ordinance they "violated" and then downplaying that into a different offense they didn't commit. Had one time where I was pulled over for making a legal right on red and had the officer pull me over and tell me he was going to mark it as a noise ordinance violation. He even explained it would save points on my license as it was a non-moving violation and I can just go pay that at the court house. Prosecuting attorney dismissed the charges when I showed up to contest them and explained what had happened.
Not A Question, But A Statement
Here's one I see from smarter cops:
(Sniff sniff) "I smell beer." (wait for a response)
It's not a question, but it definitely puts the ball in your court to "explain" why this officer smells beer.
While it's tempting to suggest that maybe the officer just burped, the correct response is to ask whether you are free to go. If not, it's time to say "My lawyer told me never to answer any questions or consent to any searches."
Maybe Don't Talk Back?
"Do you know what the speed limit here is?"
"No officer I was driving much too fast to read those tiny signs"
It's All In The Wording
"Do you know how fast you were going?" = Either you tell me you were speeding or I know are going to lie to me.
I learned a good response from my girlfriend's Dad, "I honestly don't know how to answer that question."
I saw some footage of an officer pull over a group of lads simply for being a group of lads and he noticed they had a frisbee in the car and asked "Oh cool, you guys into Ultimate Frisbee? Why is it so many Ultimate Frisbee players smoke weed?"
The driver said "you're trying to trick me so I will not be answering any questions."
When All Else Fails, Keep Pursuing
I saw a video of cop who pulled this old guy over for speeding. And the cop did the following trick: He tells the guy he clocked him going 90.
It was a trick, the cop didnt know how fast the guy was going but suspected him of speeding. He intentionally accused the guy of speeding an inflated number in order to trick the guy into responding by saying something like "90!!!! NO WAY! I was only going 75!" .... which would be an admission of guilt.
BUT! That clever old guy just said that there was no way he was going 90 and left it at that. The officer even asked how fast he was going then (multiple times) and the guy instead just went on and on about not driving 90mph. The officer actually admitted later that he didnt clock him speeding and let him off with a warning.
Do You Mind If You Incriminate Yourself
Do you mind if I search your vehicle?
If you say "yes" meaning that you do mind, the cop will say you just consented to a search. If you say "no" then it means you don't mind and just consented to a search.
You have to say "I do not consent to a search."
Edit: to clarify, I'm not saying there are specific magic words, just that you have to clearly and explicitly state your non-consent.
Remember, You Have Rights
"Hey, can I check your backpack?"
I was stopped because an officer saw me cut through a parking lot and thought I was about to graffiti a church. It was night, and I was jogging in a black hoodie and black backpack to catch a bus, so I get the suspicion. The question was clever because I could have opened my backpack to demonstrate my lack of spray paint, only to reveal something else incriminating. I declined the inspection, even though I think I had only textbooks, notebooks, and maybe a laptop.
"I Don't Remember"
Have you had anything to drink?
Any living human being would need to answer yes, except you. You know better.
This question is introduced in a grand jury setting as driver admitted to drinking. Regardless of anything you admit you drank.
Again, You Don't Have To Say Anything
Telling you that if you have any drugs, to just hand them over and everything will go much better.
But It's A Chance To Show Off My Talent
My buddy was arrested for public intoxication, the cop was a nice dude (college town) and he looked at my friend who was trying to be a smart a$% and said "I bet you can't touch your thumbs together behind your back!"My friend: "oh yeah??" Proceeds to do so.click click! Cuffed him, it was absolutely hilarious
They Wanna Get In Close
If you're stopped while driving it's common for the officer to suddenly have hearing failure and ask you to repeat something while leaning close to your face - they're checking for alcohol on your breath.
Don't drink and drive - if you use this information to try and avoid being caught you'll just be more likely to get breathalyzed.
It's Really All Of Them
Cops don't ask questions just to pass the time being friendly.
They are fishing for self-incrimination. Always. Even if they ask you ten completely innocuous questions, they are just working up to the eleventh one, which will be designed to incriminate you.
Not Just A Speed Trap, A Word Trap
I had a cop pull this devious tactic on me at a DUI checkpoint (note: I dont drink alcohol... at all).
So, he's asking the usual questions where are you coming from? (work) where are you going? (home) How long have you worked there? etc etc..and then he suddenly gets all casual and says "well if you ARE drunk, you sure fooled me.". I thought it was an odd thing to say and I know to be careful what I say to a cop (because of the tricks they use) so just to be safe I didnt say anything. Just looked at him. He looks away for a second, says something else (I dont remember what exactly) and then goes right back and says the exact same line. "Well, if you are drunk you sure fooled me". At that I KNEW something odd was going on. So I ask him if we were done and could I leave? At that he let me go.
Later, after trying to figure out what that was all about I realized if I had said anything to the affirmative (yes, uh-huh, or even nodded) it would be as if I said "yes, I AM fooling you... I AM drunk".
IMO a pretty despicable way to get someone to unknowingly admit guilt to something they may not even
Just Know, It's All The Questions
This is really important. Officers are pros at making you self-incriminating yourself.
I tell my friends this all the time; The first thing I learned in undergrad law classes (and being a black woman) is that when you're stopped or pulled over cops are NOT trying to make small talk with you, they are simply trying to get more information by doing the whole good cop bad cop thing. They make you think they're on your side and making small talk and they're trying to get more evidence or incriminating statements from you.
Here's the best example; A pair of officers pull you over for suspected drinking and driving and asks how many drinks you've had tonight. Of course, you know what they're trying to do. At this point one officer goes back and says "hold on, let me get (fill in the blank of some excuse to stall)." The other Officer stays at your car and seems like they're making small talk. (Also, you could just not you know.... be selfish and risk everyone's lives by driving drunk but whatever I guess.)
They ask you questions like: -"So... what did you have for lunch today?" (The more you eat, the more you can drink. Empty tummies = less tolerance for alcohol). -"Are you in college? What organizations?" (Trying to judge your lifestyle. This is very prominent in small towns, college towns, and college areas. If you say you're apart of a notoriously party/rowdy organization they can see that you are likely to be drinking at that time and/or better at holding liquor than somebody else). -"You look like you lift or play sports. What do you do? Sounds cool, tell me about it." (If you lift weights or play something that builds muscle you can handle more alcohol. If you do an activity that makes your skinny and speeds your metabolism, like running or ballet, you handle alcohol worse but it gets out of your system fast ). -What y'all do today? Did you go to the event that happened earlier today?" (Might seem harmless because they're asking about an event that happened hours and hours ago but it could be very telling about what you're up to now. Like maybe there's after parties or something. This one is also huge in college areas). -"What are you studying and/or what do you want to do?" (College things. Certain majors attract certain people. Some majors people are more likely to know the law/their rights, so the cops need to step up their mind games)
tl;dr; cops will make small talk with you, making it seem like they're kind and actually care but they are often getting little details about your day, schedule or lifestyle to see if there's more suspicion to have.
Cops are overworked, underpaid and extremely busy. They don't give a sh-t about your day, major, or hobbies.
We've all said something stupid, let's not lie to ourselves.
It's okay to say something stupid. It showcases the real person on the inside, that we're all flawed, imperfect, and made of cooky combinations of words that don't necessarily line up to make sense. Sometimes we're nervous in a situation, other times we're just hitting 'Quick Reply' in our brains and what comes out doens't work, but whatever the reason, you for sure are going to remember it, late at night, for the rest of your life.
What is the stupidest thing that ever came out of your mouth?
You may not have to change your home address because of these moments, but you should probably reconsider how many public outings you go to afterwards.
Should Probably Never Shop At That Store Again
"When the cashier said "Have a nice day", and I replied with "No, thanks".
"Background: I wasnt thinking straight that day, and thought they said "Do you want a bag"
That's. How. Twins. Work?
"Her: the twins are 3 years old"
"Me: Both of them?"
"Oh no this unearthed a memory i had buried from kindergarten lmao"
"We had a set of twins in our classroom and once on their birthday party I said "your brother got such a cool party, i hope yours is nice like this too" to one of them and he was like "yeah, this one"
"4 year old me was not a very bright kid"
That's. How. Death. Works...
"Watching the documentary 'The Last Dance' when a Kobe interview pops up -"
"Me: "Wow, they must have filmed this before Kobe died."
"My wife: "Yeah, obviously…."
The cringe comes out of nowhere, and you're not even sure how you were able to ask something so incredibly stupid, but here you are. Lounging in the stupid air.
You Should Have Asked What "Nothing" Tastes Like Next
"In my head I was wondering what one pound of water would look like in terms of volume. What I said out loud however was "How much does a pound of water weigh?"
Keep Up With Me
"A couple of months ago, I got up and drove to work as usual. Later, my girlfriend texted me from home to ask me if she had left her sunglasses in my car. I told her I wasn't sure, but she could grab my spare key and go check."
"In my car."
"Which I had driven to work."
Black Is White, White Is Black
"I don't understand why people place bets on who wins, why not just place bets on who loses?"
"Yeah took me a minute to register what I said..."
And then there's these stories, where the person is probably better off cutting off any human contact henceforth going forward. These are rough to get through, folks.
Should Probably Have A Chat With HR After This
"I was about 4 months into my current job, feeling confident being fresh off the contract-to-hire period, now moved into a coveted full time role. While walking back to my office from the morning kanban I was stopped by my boss, head peeking out of the office:"
"Boss: "Hey TheMediator, do you have a sec?"
"Me: "For you, I've got lots of secs!"
"Boss: wide-eyes, mouth dropped"
"If you're curious why this was incredibly stupid/embarrassing, try saying the phrase "lots of secs" out loud. Preferably, not to your boss though."
You Don't Need College Anymore. Go Home. Bury Your Head In The Sand.
"In my freshman year of college I was dorming next door to a couple cute girls. About a week into the first semester one girl walked from the coed showers to her dorm room in her towel still wet. We were both unlocking our doors to get in our rooms when she looks at me and says…"
"I know I look stunning…(sarcastically)"
"To which I replied, "don't flatter yourself."
"I had to slid a note under her door explaining I was tongue tied as she was beautiful and I meant to say "don't be hard on yourself, you look great." (Or something to that nature). We became good friends."
It's In The Descriptor?
"Chatting to a homeless guy on the street and he told me he was feeling unwell. I told him he should be at home, resting."
"It's been 20 years and the memory of it still brings me out in a cold sweat."
Oh Good Lord...
"Asked my friend how his mom was doing at his moms funeral."
"Jesus Christ this is the worst one on this thread. What was his response?"
"He looked at me and then the casket and kind of smirked. I awkwardly started to try and explain and just said "I'm an idiot. You know I love you. Talk to you in a bit." He makes fun of me now and I can't stop laughing. It's a positive painful memory."
Own up to your mistakes. You'll garner more respect by acknowledging the awkward things you say, however, it's perfectly fine to laugh about it in the moment. That's probably the easiest way to escape the deep, deep shame.
The advice "fake it til you make it," though often said with at least a hint of sarcasm, does carry quite a bit of wisdom.
By simply putting one foot in front of the other, weathering the chaos of not knowing what's happening as you learn as fast as possible, we can find ourselves further than we expected.
Once we're there, reaping the fruits of all our "faking," we somehow begin to take on a new identity in people's eyes They assume we've always been in control and known what was going on. They defer to us for advice.
But that couldn't be further from the truth. So we keep on faking it.
Redditor espectro11 asked:
"What's your 'I don't know, I didn't think I'd get this far' moment?"
Many Redditors discussed their experiences navigating the intimidating environment of job applications, interviews, and offers.
Oh Right, Getting Paid
"I gave my resume to fancy private school (I'm a teacher, but new to the field) and I didn't expect a call back. But they called me today to ask my expected salary and I said 'I don't know what the average is. Let me Google it.' "
"Ya girl was not prepared."
"When I went for a walk-in interview looking like crap and they hired me on the spot. I get they were hiring for a new store, but they up and said 'if you want the job it's yours, when can you start?' "
"Deada** didn't think I'd make it that far."
Outside the Box
"Years ago I was applying to a bunch of copywriting jobs and feeling frustrated because I wasnt hearing back from any of the places I was applying to."
"It was especially frustrating because I was putting in all this time on cover letters and I felt like nobody was even reading them, so I said, 'Fu** it, I'm gonna write one that is more me.' I thought it was a dumb idea and never imagined that it would work, but somehow it did."
"I applied with this cover letter and the subject line "Copywriter: Will Work for Beer" to a job that I was very underqualified for. It managed to catch the eye of the headhunter for the ad agency and was enough to get me an interview. Shortly after that I was hired and ended up working there for a few years, but I remember thinking on my first day, 'I can't believe that actually worked.' "
Just Not the Right Fit
"An interview at Google. The 20 years younger than me was describing the peer review system."
"I responded with 'Jesus, that sounds awful.' "
"I did not get the job."
Others also shared experiences that centered on their working lives. But these stories weren't about being hired or interviewed.
These were accounts of long-developing success stories that they never would have predicted.
A Winding Road
"My entire legal career"
"I have four degrees and a 10 year career in commerical litigation. I just wrapped up a $200mil trusts lawsuit."
"I started at uni doing theatre and stand up comedy. I have no fu**ing idea where I turned to get here."
"Started at a very small company doing sales straight out of college. I went about messaging big corporate players (who obviously would never do business with us since our size) and was laughed at by my new colleagues for even trying."
"2 weeks later My boss was asking me what we (a team of 6) should say on the conference call with Toshiba Buyers."
Putting Fires Out
"Me at work. I feel like every issue that comes up has me unprepared. But I am always praised for my good work."
"So, I assume I have imposter syndrome and keep doing what I am doing."
So next time you find yourself ruling a possibility out completely, maybe take just a few seconds to imagine it actually occurred and prepare.
You just never know.
I'm going to be perfectly honest––I'm a city boy. I'm not a huge fan of hiking or camping. I happen to be a huge fan of running water. Have you heard of it? It's great. Highly recommended.
I've also, on a more humorous note, watched far too many horror films over the years and don't particularly like idea of running off into the woods only to piss off some demon that was perfectly fine until I arrived. I also have immense respect for our friendly neighborhood serial killers and demonstrate this regularly by staying out of their territory.
Those who love the great outdoors had plenty to share after Redditor Your_Normal_Loser asked the online community, "
Hikers of Reddit, what is the weirdest or creepiest thing you've come across while hiking?"
"The only reason..."
"When we were exploring the Australian Outback as university students, my friend and I found an old, tightly wrapped plastic bag with five or six damaged wallets along shrubbery at the base of a cliff.
The only reason we opened it up was because we were so remote - hundreds of kilometres from any town or tourist attraction - that it was strange to see garbage out there. All the cards were in female names and birthdates placed them in their late teens to early 20s. Some lived in the Northern Territory but one was in Sydney and another from Queensland. At the time we figured rock climbers must have stored their valuables in the bag and then lost track of it. I'll never forget the strange look the police officer gave us when we handed them in."
You see... this is why I wouldn't go mess around in the Australian Outback.
I also may or may not have watched Wolf Creek one too many times.
"A recliner on a small hill with a hole dug out in the middle and water bottles all over the place."
"A trashed campsite..."
"A trashed campsite complete with the tent cut open...
...do you report these things, or what?"
Or maybe not... you might want to turn back.
"The walls were completely plastered..."
"I was walking in a thick forest and came across an opening. In the center there was a shack made of lumber, with a bench built into it that was slightly leaned back.
The walls were completely plastered in porn."
Well... that's one way to get off.
"The man stopped talking..."
"I was backpacking with a few friends. A few days in the middle of nowhere, a man approached our camp as we were cooking dinner to say hi. We talked about our routes for a few minutes. Out of nowhere, he told us that he had had a vasectomy in his 30s after his 2nd child. Then somehow his wife had gotten pregnant with his 3rd child. He didn't believe this was possible, so he demanded a DNA test to see if he was actually the father. He was. Still, he explained that he had his doubts and thought that his wife must have fixed the DNA test.
My friends and I were in our 20s and had no idea why this guy was telling us this. We all just nodded and smiled.
The man stopped talking and then just walked away into the night."
"I stepped in..."
"I stepped in and fell over a cow carcass on a night hike. It was a bright moonlit night but I didn't see it in the shadows. Thankfully it was mostly dry."
"We still have no idea..."
"I was in the woods with three friends at night. A friend's house was nearby and I was getting hungry so I went inside to find some food. Another friend came inside with me. Two friends were still outside.
Later on, one of the two who outside came in and sees the indoor friend on the couch next to me. They panic and immediately run back outside.
I poke my head out the door asking what's going on, only to hear them yell as loudly as they can, "THAT'S NOT KEVIN"
Everyone comes inside and calms down a bit, and the story comes out. They thought the friend who was indoors with me (Kevin) had been outside with them this entire time. Why? Because in the darkness of the woods they saw a silhouette about the same height walking alongside them silently, then at some point it ran away and they were chasing it thinking Kevin was running off for some reason. The reason my friend yelled, "That's not Kevin" was to stop the last outdoor friend from chasing whoever was out there deeper into the woods.
We still have no idea who that was or why they didn't even speak."
This story sent a chill running down my spine.
Who was that?!
Perhaps figuring it out would be even scarier.
"Went hiking with my dad..."
"Went hiking with my dad one day over a ridge. A girl from the group in front of us tripped and slid down one side and was just able to hold on to the tiniest branch from the only tree around. Had she slid down all the way she certainly would be dead or massively injured!"
"I was trying to make my way across..."
"I was hiking in Washington sometime in December. I was trying to make my way across a river but the bridge was out. I was walking along the shore looking for a shallow spot but couldn't find one. I saw some footprints leading down the bank, my thought was that someone was trying to do what I was doing and decided to track the prints to see if they crossed. It was not easy but I followed the prints for about a mile. As I approached what looked like a crossing I heard a loud BANG like a stick hitting a tree. I froze for a few seconds and heard no other noises. I just slowly back up keeping my eyes on the other side of the river. Could not shake the feeling that I was being watched. Got the hell out of there quick as I could."
There are few feelings creepier than the feeling of being watched. It makes you feel like you've been violated in some way.
Thankfully you got out of there!
"I thought it was a magical, beautiful moment..."
"I was hiking with some friends, and I saw a cluster of butterflies on the ground. I thought it was a magical, beautiful moment until I realized they were congregating on a pool of blood. It turns out that someone had been hiking on the bluffs above earlier that day, and had fallen off and died."
Sooo... still want to go hiking or camping? None of this changed your mind? None of it?
It was nice knowing you. I'll stick with my running water.
Have some creepy stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
Have some experiences of your own? Have you also survived the hospitality industry? Feel free to tell us about it in the comments below!
Time is of the essence. And time is not definable. Those are lessons we learn as we get older; as times passes and fluctuates in front of us.
Time is always fleeting yet always catches up to us. I find myself shocked when I wake up on certain days and realize I'm a particular age of my parent that sticks out for me.
Like, how did that happen? I guess I should just be thankful I'm still here to witness it all.
Redditor u/TW1103 wanted to discuss the meaning... of time and all of its affects by asking:
What fact really puts the scale of time into an insane perspective?
Ok, who is watching the clock? Those seconds aren't going to count themselves. The only way to understand time is to be its witness. Although that can get depressing. Let's focus on the light and cool.
History...Calculate Figure It Out GIF by OriginalsGiphy
"If you are an 80-year-old American, you have lived through approximately 1/3 of our nation's entire history."
"The 80s were 40 years ago."
"This is what messes me up because I was born in 82 and graduated high school in 2000 so for some reason my brain is stuck on the 80's being twenty years ago. The 70's thirty years ago etc etc. I have to stop and realize sometimes that my concept of how long ago things happened is way off."
Time goes by...
"We observe that light travels at 186,000 miles a second, but given the vast size of the observable universe, that's a snail's pace. But from the point of view of a particle of light, time doesn't even exist."
"Time slows down as you approach the speed of light, and theoretically stops completely when you reach the speed of light."
Years Gone By...
"MLK Jr. and Anne Frank were born in the same year."
"Betty White was born in 1922. Automatically pre-sliced packaged bread loaves became commercially available in 1928. Betty White is six years older than sliced bread."
Long Live the Queen!queen elizabeth images GIFGiphy
"The queen and Marilyn Monroe would've been the same age."
I swear Liz is going to outlive dirt. Wait, I believe she already has. Well she won't be alone, she'll have Betty White. At least she better have Betty. Time is nothing without Queen Betty.
TV TimeSeason 2 Omg GIF by Paramount+Giphy
"Happy Days was a TV show made in the 1970s-80s about teenagers in the 1950s. Similarly, That 70s Show was made in the 90s-00s about teenagers in the 70s. If a similar show were to be made today, it would be about teenagers in the 2000s."
"If a T-Rex imagined a creature as ancient as the T-Rex is to us, it would be a Stegosaurus. If that Stegosaurus imagined a creature as ancient as the Stegosaurus is to us, it would be a Crocodile. If that Crocodile imagined a creature as ancient as that Crocodile is to us, it would be a Shark."
On the Clock
"On a twenty four hour clock the amount of time that humans have been on the earth would total around five seconds."
"How about this one: If Homo Habilus first appeared at midnight, 24 hours ago, that means the first Homo Sapiens appeared at 9:25 PM, or about 2 and a half hours ago. The first human civilization, in lower Mesopotamia, appeared at 11:57 PM, or about 3 minutes ago."
"The Western Roman Empire fell at 11:59 PM, or 1 minute ago. Everything that has happened since - the Crusades, the Plague, the discovery of the New World, the world wars, all of it - has happened in the last minute of human existence."
And that's just OUR Sun...
"The span of our lives are so insignificantly small that our Sun will last another 5 billion years. That's 9 zeros people. Our eldest live to around 100 in the best places. That's 50,000,000 (50 million) times longer than any person can reasonably expect to live. And that's just OUR Sun. The universe as a whole has probably existed for magnitudes longer than that already and will continue to exist until the end of time as we know it."
Tell Me a Storywilliam shakespeare GIF by will herringGiphy
"We know what a good storyteller Shakespeare was but there were Greek playwrights who wrote shows nearly 2,000 years earlier that are pretty good, too."
I hate time. Only because I'm petty and irritated of the amount I squandered. That's neither here nor there though. Time marches on and continues to amaze. I'll keep watching.