NYC Jericho and Universal Zulu Nation on Surviving Encounters with the Police

Editor’s Note: The following is both an announcement for a free public event (Wednesday, July 5, 2017 in New York City) and also a public service from the New York Jericho Movement and the Universal Zulu Nation.  For this reason, the event is announced in our Community Calendar as well as in this section, and this blog post will remain after the event because of the advice given below on surviving encounters with police.  The suggestions below are designed to ensure that your rights in such an encounter are legally asserted while also minimizing the likelihood of being harmed by police officers.  It is unfortunate, given the recent incidents of police brutality, and the subsequent refusal, even by “juries of our peers”, to convict officers who were clearly incriminated by visual evidence, that this kind of advice is necessary, but it is an important service to help ensure that all of us, in the event of such an encounter, will at least survive long enough to answer charges of criminality as well as post claims of police misconduct or abuse in court.

New York City Jericho Movement
The “Universal Zulu Nation” In Association With The NYC “Stop The Raids Coalition” Presents…

A Basic Introduction To Surviving Encounters With The Police
Wednesday, July 5, 2017
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm   (doors open at 6:30 pm)
@ The National Black Theater
2031 Fifth Avenue  (between 125th/126th streets)
Harlem, New York 10035 

*Free Admission – All Are Welcome! 

Last week was a devastating moment for our communities with THREE painful not guilty verdicts in the police murders of Philando Castile, Samuel Dubose and Sylville Smith. The horrible reality is that cops can kill Black, Brown and oppressed people and get away with it.

First prepare by reading & studying the below “What To Do If You’re Stopped By The Police”  and then; Join us next week at Harlem’s National Black Theater for a “Free” introductory mini-workshop to learn some basic information that could very well save your life and the lives of your loved ones. 


– A Short Film Screening of “Every Mothers Son”
– Know Your Rights & Legal First Aid at Home, your Car and In The Streets
– Cop Watch, Self Defense & Survival Against Physical Police Attacks
– People’s Security and Anti-Police Terror Tactics at Marches & Demonstrations
– People’s Cyber Security & Countering Police Intelligence 

Information:  – and/or –


 What to Do If You’re Stopped by the Police

We all recognize the need for effective law enforcement, but we should also understand our own rights and responsibilities — especially in our interactions with the police. This card tells you what to do if you are stopped, questioned, arrested, or injured in your encounter with the police, and how to file a complaint. IF YOU HAVE A POLICE ENCOUNTER, YOU CAN PROTECT YOURSELF.

What you say to the police is always important. Everything you say can be used against you.

You have the right not to speak. To exercise this right, you should tell the police, “I would like to remain silent.”

You never have to consent to a search of yourself, your belongings, your car or your house. If you do consent to a search, it can affect your rights later in court. If the police say they have a search warrant, ask to see it. If they don’t, say “I do not consent to this search.” Police cannot arrest you simply for refusing to consent
to a search. This may not stop the search from happening, but it will protect your rights if you have to go to court.

Do not interfere with or obstruct the police—you can be arrested for it.


Police may stop and briefly detain you only if there is reasonable suspicion that you committed, are committing or are about to commit a crime.

You should ask if you are under arrest or free to leave.

In New York, you are not required to carry ID, and you don’t have to show ID to a police officer. If you are issued a summons or arrested, however, and you refuse to produce ID or tell officers who you are, the police may detain you until you can be positively identified.

Don’t bad-mouth a police officer or run away, even if you believe what is happening is unreasonable. That could lead to your arrest.


Upon request, show the police your driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance. In certain cases, your car can be searched without a warrant. To protect yourself later, you should state that you do not consent to a search.

If you’re suspected of drunk driving (DWI), you will be asked to take a breath-alcohol and coordination test. If you fail the tests, or if you refuse to take them, you will be arrested, your driver’s license may be suspended and your car may be taken away.

If you are arrested, your car will be subject to a search.


The police can enter your home without your permission if they have a warrant or if it is an emergency. If the police say they have a warrant, ask to see it. Check to make sure the warrant has the correct address.

If you are arrested in your home or office, the police can search you and the area immediately surrounding you or where evidence of criminal activity is in plain view.


You have the right to remain silent and the right to talk to a lawyer before you talk to the police. Don’t tell the police anything except your name and address. Don’t give any explanations, excuses or stories. You can make your defense later, in court, based on what you and your lawyer decide is best.

If you have a lawyer, ask to see your lawyer immediately. If you can’t afford a lawyer, you have the right to a free one once your case goes to court. You can ask the police how to contact a lawyer. Don’t say anything to police without speaking to a lawyer first.

Within a reasonable time after your arrest or booking, you should ask the police to contact a family member or friend. If you are permitted to make a phone call, anything you say at the precinct may be recorded or listened to. Never talk about the facts of your case over the telephone.

Do not make any decisions in your case or sign any statements until you have talked with a lawyer.


  • Stay calm and in control of your words, body language and emotions.
  • Don’t get into an argument with the police.
  • Never bad-mouth a police officer.
  • Remember, anything you say or do can be used against you.
  • Keep your hands where the police can see them.
  • Don’t run.
  • Don’t touch any police officer.
  • Don’t resist even if you believe you are innocent.
  • If you complain at the scene, or tell the police they’re wrong, do so in a non-confrontational way that will not intensify the scene.
  • Do not make any statements regarding the incident.
  • If you are arrested, ask for a lawyer immediately.
  • Remember officers’ badge numbers, patrol car numbers and physical descriptions.
  • Write down everything you remember ASAP.
  • Try to find witnesses and their names and phone numbers.
  • If you are injured, take photos of the injuries as soon as possible, but make sure you get medical attention first. Ask for copies of your medical treatment files.

To File A Police Misconduct Complaint: Contact the Civilian Complaint Review Board by calling 311 or by visiting

Our mailing address is:

New York City Jericho Movement
P.O. Box 670927
Bronx, NY 10467