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Criminal procedure


Arrest or custodial arrest is the process in which the police take physical possession or custody of a person whom they have probable cause to believe committed a criminal offense. Arrest is distinguishable from other circumstances in which the police stop, detain, or otherwise interact with persons because it is generally the point at which a person is not free to leave or walk away from the police. Arrest is also the point at which some Constitutional rights and protections are provided to the accused. A person who is placed in handcuffs or otherwise physically restrained is clearly under arrest—but in some circumstances a person may be under arrest due to threats or intimidation from the police.

In Texas, an arrest or custodial arrest occurs when law enforcement takes a person into physical custody based on probable cause that the individual has committed a criminal offense. This is a formal process that distinguishes from other interactions such as investigatory stops or detentions. During an arrest, the individual is not free to leave the presence of the police. The point of arrest triggers certain Constitutional rights for the accused, such as the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. While physical restraints like handcuffs are a clear indication of arrest, it can also occur through coercive means such as threats or intimidation by law enforcement. Texas law requires that an arrested person be informed of the charges against them and their rights, including the right to an attorney. Additionally, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure outlines the procedures and rights associated with an arrest, including the requirement for law enforcement to obtain an arrest warrant under certain circumstances, although there are exceptions where an officer can arrest without a warrant.

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