Monday, April 22, 2013

Miranda Warnings.....A little info for the misinformed.....

For the folks who never dealt with Miranda warnings..... 
They don't have to be read!!!
That is just on TV. 
Many police officers make arrests and NEVER read the Miranda warnings. 
The warnings only have to be read if the person is in custody AND questioned. 
If a person is caught in the act of committing a crime, he/she may never need to be questioned. If a person arrested starts saying, "I did it. I did it. I shot the person." on the ride back to the stationhouse,prior to Miranda warnings being read, that statement is generally admissible. 

The following are situations where courts have deemed that Miranda is not necessitated:
  • Even if a suspect is in custody, officer's statements do not meet the standard of custodial interrogation unless they are either express or equivalent statements, which are reasonably likely to illicit an incriminating response(If the cop is not questioning the criminal, he doesn't need to give Miranda)
  • Police hostage negotiations are not interrogations
  • A secretly taped meeting between a suspect and a police officer, where the suspect attended voluntarily. (Not in custody)
  • While in custody, Miranda is not required if the suspect is unaware that he is voluntarily talking to a police officer
  • Police may ask standard booking question without necessitating Miranda warnings (Name,address, date of birth,etc...)
  • The police may question a suspect without reading Miranda warnings if such questioning is necessary for public safety. See more here

As a citizen, you don't lose your rights just because a police officer does not read you the Miranda warnings. You still have the right to remain silent. If you do say something, it may be held against you. It may not be. The determination will in part be based on public safety. See Quarles v. NY

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