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In Virginia, if I am suspected of committing a crime, will I be given a ticket (Virginia Uniform Summons) and allowed to go on my way or will I be taken into custody and transported to jail?

Under Virginia criminal law relating to the method of effecting an arrest, the answer to whether a person will be given a ticket (Virginia Uniform Summons) and released or taken into custody is a complicated one which depends on the specific circumstances.  A few general rules are listed below.

If you are suspected of committing a crime in Virginia, you most likely will be taken into custody if:   
- you are suspected of a felony offense in Virginia
- you refuse to sign a ticket (Virginia Uniform Summons) in Virginia
- you refuse to stop the illegal behavior in Virginia
- you are believed to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Virginia
- you are suspected of a crime of violence in Virginia
- you are suspected of a crime in another jurisdiction and Virginia authorities are alerted

For a more detailed explanation of when Virginia law requires release on a summons, click here.   

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