The U.S. Supreme Court, in its landmark judgment in Miranda v. Arizona case of 1966, declared that an individual must be informed of his or her Fifth Amendment rights whenever he or she is taken into police custody. This must be done before any questioning is done by the police. The Fifth Amendment includes the right of a citizen not to make any statements to the police that may be self-incriminating in nature.
Under this rule, according to our Fort Lauderdale Criminal Attorneys, before a person is questioned in police custody, he or she must be told the following things:
That the person has a right to remain silent.
That anything the person says can and will be used in a court of law against him or her.
That the person has a right to hire a lawyer.
That if the person cannot afford a lawyer, the government will appoint one on his or her behalf.
Our Fort Lauderdale Criminal Attorneys are Constantly asked about the Reading of Rights or Miranda Warnings
Individuals in police custody may seek to hire the services of a lawyer to protect their rights under the law. William Moore, a highly experienced, veteran criminal defense attorney, has successfully represented thousands of criminal defendants in throughout the State of Florida. A former Broward County criminal prosecutor, William Moore holds the experience and knowledge in defending criminal defendants. His record of case wins is available upon request to those seeking representation. Criminal Defense Attorney William Moore carries a positive working relationship with colleagues, prosecutors and judges. If you are interviewing Fort Lauderdale Criminal Attorneys, consider contacting our office and scheduling a complimentary case evaluation.
Failure of the Police to Read Miranda Rights
When an arrested suspect is questioned in police custody without having been read his or her Miranda Rights, any confession or statement made in such condition will be inadmissible as evidence in a court of law, and will be presumed to be an involuntary statement. If any other evidence is found as a direct or indirect result of such invalid confession or statement, it is also like to be considered inadmissible to the case. But if the police already know the suspect is guilty and they have evidence and/or witnesses pinpointing them to the crime, Miranda Rights do not have to be read as the perpetrator is handcuffed and taken to jail and booking.
Our Fort Lauderdale Criminal Attorneys caution, however, the law permits police officers to ask certain basic questions without the requirement to read a suspect’s Miranda Rights. Such questions include the following:
Name of the suspect.
Contact details of the suspect.
The suspect’s date of birth.
The suspect’s Social Security number.
Any other question that is essential to establish the identity of the suspect.
Drug and alcohol testing in police custody may also be carried out without giving a Miranda warning to the suspect. Our Fort Lauderdale Criminal Attorneys still advise requesting counsel before proceeding, however.
When Miranda Rights do not Apply
Miranda rights of an individual are not applicable in every situation. Two fundamental pre-requisites must be fulfilled before it becomes obligatory on the police to give out a Miranda warning to the suspect:
The suspect has been placed under police custody.
The suspect has been placed under police interrogation.
It is important to understand these basic pre-requisites. If a suspect has not been formally placed in police custody, it effectively means that the suspect is not under formal police interrogation. In such a situation, the police officers are not required to read out the Miranda Rights to the suspect.
In other words, anything that a suspect says prior to his or her being placed under police custody and interrogation, it may be used as valid incriminating evidence against the suspect in a court of law. Suspects may consult with criminal defense lawyers in Broward at the earliest possibility to defend their rights in the eyes of the law.