The citizens of Evangeline Parish need to be aware that the Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office is adhering to state statutes when enforcing all laws. Some of the valid reasons for stops, searches, and arrests are listed below.
1. You can be stopped and questioned by a Law Enforcement Officer if you are a witness or if you are a suspect because you fit the description of someone involved in a crime.
2. You can be asked your name, address, age, and requested to provide your I.D.
3. The Law Enforcement Officer should have reasonable suspicion that you committed, you are committing, or about to commit a crime.
4. Never attempt to run away from an officer as he approaches or bad-mouth an officer.
5. The officer may conduct a STOP and FRISK if they have reasonable suspicion that you have been involved in a crime and/or armed and dangerous.
6. If the officer feels what he believes is a weapon while patting you down, he can attempt to retrieve it.
7. Never reach towards your waistband or try to empty your pockets while an officer is approaching.
8. If you are arrested by an officer, they must have probable cause for believing that you have committed a crime.
9. Never run, resist, or fight back at any time during the arrest.
10. Never reach suddenly into your pockets or clothing during contact with an officer or arrest.
Remember the officers are trying to do their jobs without incident if possible. No one wants to have to use force unless it is necessary to control the situation, and if force is used it will be within the law.