216-867-0429 rob@stiefvaterlaw.com


You have Constitutionally Guaranteed Rights – Know & Exercise them!!!

This page was developed to provide a brief overview of some of your rights.  If you have specific questions about your rights, ask a Criminal Defense Lawyer.

Pre-Arrest Rights

The police can perform a brief investigatory stop of a person (whether in a vehicle or not).  The investigatory stop must be supported by reasonable, articulable suspicion that illegal activity is occurring.

A frisk or pat-down can only be justified (during an investigatory stop) if the officer has a reasonable belief that the person is carrying a weapon or is otherwise a threat to the officer.


An officer must have probable cause to arrest.  Probable cause is defined as “information sufficient to justify a reasonably prudent person to believe that (1) an offense was committed; and (2) that the individual being arrested committed the offense.”

There are different requirements for an arrest with or without a warrant and for where the arrest takes place.

Right to Remain Silent

Once you are placed under arrest, you have the right to remain silent.  Prior to your arrest, you are not required to provide any information other than your identification.

Many arresting police officers will attempt to have you make incriminating statements or confessions.  They will make you feel that if you make these statements that they will go easy on you.  If you are in this situation, respectfully ask for an attorney and do not say a word until you have spoken with your lawyer.  If a deal is going to be brokered with the police- your lawyer can ensure that you will be protected.

Right to Counsel

Anytime you have been arrested or charged with a crime that has a potential term of incarceration, you have the right to an attorney.  Exercise this right.  Do not make statements until you have spoken to your lawyer.

If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you.  Public Defenders often receive a bad rap – regardless of your opinion or the opinions of others – you are better off with a public defender than with no lawyer at all.


This page is constantly being updated and expanded.  If you have questions concerning your rights do not hesitate to call Attorney Stiefvater.

Main Law Office:

Stiefvater Law, LLC
8748 Brecksville Rd., Ste 216
Brecksville, Ohio 44141

Robert can be reached at


Satellite Office:

Stiefvater Law, LLC
6100 Oak Tree Blvd., Ste 200
Independence, Ohio 44131

Free Consultation

This website is maintained for informational purposes only.  Please see the disclaimer.

Stiefvater Law, LLC has had the privilege to defend countless individuals.  Founding Attorney Robert Stiefvater practices throughout Ohio- Federal; including but not limited to the following jurisdictions- County: Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Erie, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, Stark, and Summit- the following Municipal: Bedford, Berea, Cleveland, Cleveland Heights, Euclid, Garfield Heights, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Parma, Rocky River, Shaker Heights, Sandusky, Vermillion, Chardon, Mentor, Painesville, Willoughby, Avon Lake, Elyria, Lorain, Oberlin, Medina, Wadsworth, Canton, Massillon, Akron, and Stow- and the following Mayor’s Beachwood, Boston Heights,  Broadview Heights, Brook Park, Brooklyn, Chagrin Falls, Independence, Middleburg Heights, Newburgh Heights, North Royalton, Seven Hills, Strongsville, Avon, North Ridgeville, Brunswick, Boston Heights, Cuyahoga Falls, Fairlawn, Macedonia, and Northfield.

If you have been charged with a crime or a DUI - OVI, and need an OVI lawyer or local criminal defense attorney:

Trust Attorney Stiefvater to defend you against any of the following criminal charges:
Aiding & Abetting, Accessory, Arson, Assault, Attempt, Battery, Bribery, Burglary, Child Abandonment, Child Abuse, Child Endangering, Child Pornography, Computer Crime, Conspiracy, Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor, Credit Card Fraud, Contempt of Court, Cyber Bullying, Debit Card Fraud, Disorderly Conduct, Disturbing the Peace, Domestic Violence, Drug Cultivation, Drug Manufacturing, Drug Trafficking, Drug Distribution, Drug Possession, Embezzlement, Extortion, Forgery, Fraud, Harassment, Hate Crime, Homicide, Indecent Exposure, Identity Theft, Insurance Fraud, Kidnapping, Larceny, Manslaughter, Medical Marijuana, Money Laundering, Murder, Open Container, Perjury, Probation Violation, Prostitution, Public Intoxication, RICO (racketeering), Rape, Robbery, Securities Fraud, Sexual Assault, Shoplifting, Solicitation, Stalking, Statutory Rape, Tax Evasion, Tax Fraud, Telemarketing Fraud, Theft, Underage Possession, Vandalism, White Collar Crime, and Wire Fraud;
or any of the following 

Assured Clear Distance, Child Restraint Violation, Driving in Marked Lanes, Driving without a License, Driving with a Suspended License, Driving without Registration, Driving with Expired Registration, Driving Under Suspension (DUS), Drunk Driving-DUI-OVI-DWI, Failure to Control, Failure to Yield, Illegal U-Turn, Leaving the Scene of an Accident (Hit-Skip or Hit and Run), Mechanical Violations (Equipment Violations), Reckless Driving (Reckless Operation), Running a Red Light, Running a Stop Sign, Seat Belt Violation, Speeding, Unlawful Vehicle Modifications, and Wrongful Entrustment.