Most people have heard of Miranda Rights, but few know exactly what they are or why they exist. In short, Miranda Rights are a set of warnings that must be given to criminal suspects prior to interrogations by law enforcement.
The goal of Miranda Rights is to protect people from self-incrimination by ensuring that they understand their rights and can make informed decisions about whether to waive them. Unfortunately, Miranda rights are often misunderstood, so it’s important to clear up a few things.
What Are Miranda Rights?
In the 1966 U.S. Supreme Court case Miranda v. Arizona, the Court established that when a person is in police custody, they have certain rights that must be read to them before any questioning can take place. These rights, which are now commonly known as Miranda Rights, include the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. If a suspect cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided to them free of charge.
When Do Police Have To Read You Your Miranda Rights?
In general, police are required to read your Miranda rights if they intend to question you while you are in custody. This means that even if you’re not under arrest, they might still have to read you your rights.
There are a few exceptions to this rule. For example, if you make an unsolicited voluntary statement while in custody, that statement can be used even if you were not read your Miranda rights. Additionally, if police question you about an ongoing emergency situation—such as whether there are other explosives at the scene of a bombing—your Miranda rights do not have to be read.
In short, your rights must be read to you prior to custodial interrogation.
What Is Custodial Interrogation?
Custodial interrogation occurs when law enforcement officers question a person after taking them into custody or otherwise depriving them of their freedom of action in any significant way.
The U.S. Supreme Court has established that custodial interrogation is “inherently coercive,” creating pressure that may induce a confession that the person otherwise would not have been given.
What Happens If The Police Don’t Read You Your Rights?
If the police do not read you your rights after an arrest, it does not mean that the charges will automatically be dropped. However, if Miranda Rights are not read or if they are not read correctly, your statements and any evidence obtained as a result of the questioning may not be admissible in court.
For example, if the police did not read you your rights and your responses led them to physical evidence, any statements that were made during questioning and the physical evidence recovered could be ruled inadmissible in court. The physical evidence would be considered “fruit of the poisonous tree.”
If the police question you without reading you your Miranda Rights, and you confess to a crime, then the confession will likely not be able to be used as evidence against you in court.
If You’re Being Questioned, Always Ask for a Lawyer
You have the right to remain silent, and you should exercise that right. The police are trained interrogators who will use everything in their power to try to get you to incriminate yourself. They may lie, deceive, or use other underhanded tactics to try and get you to confess to a crime. This is why it is so important to have a Phoenix criminal defense lawyer present during questioning.
Many people think that they can talk their way out of a situation or that they will be able to convince the police officer that they are innocent. However, many people have been wrongfully convicted of crimes because they made the mistake of speaking with the police without a lawyer present. Do not let this happen to you. If the police approach you for questioning, be polite but firm in stating that you will not answer any questions until your lawyer is present.
If you need help, contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Contact the Criminal Defense Lawyers at Orent Law Offices In Phoenix To Get Legal Assistance Today
For more information, contact the criminal defense attorney Craig Orent. Give us a call at (480) 656-7301 or visit our law office at 11811 N Tatum Blvd UNIT 3031, Phoenix, AZ 85028. We offer a free case evaluation, so get the help you deserve today.
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