Three Classic Examples of Miranda Rights Violations
Perhaps one of the most commonly misunderstood areas of criminal law, Miranda Rights are typically read or recited to a suspect upon arrest, or shortly thereafter, advising the individual of their Constitutional rights, as they apply to arrest. While the police get it right most of the time, it is not at all uncommon for officers to make minor, yet significant, mistakes when placing suspects under arrest. The better you understand and can spot these mistakes, the better your chances of potentially avoiding a conviction. At the office of Bruce L. Udolf, P.A., we represent people charged with crimes in federal court throughout south Florida. Here are three class examples of basic Miranda Rights violations that happen every day.
#1 – Questions in Handcuffs
The first common example of a Miranda violation goes something like this. An officer takes out handcuffs and begins placing them on a suspect. While doing so, or shortly after the handcuffs go on, the police officer asks a question. Perhaps “do you want to at least give back what you took?” Or, maybe “what made you think you’d get away with that?” Although seemingly minor or inconsequential inquiries, the fact is that these questions are designed to elicit an incriminating response. According to the landmark decision from 1966, Miranda v. Arizona, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that this is all that is needed to render the information obtained inadmissible in a court of law.
#2 – Restarting a Stopped Interrogation
Say that law enforcement have taken a suspect to an interview room at the police station in order to question the individual. At first, the suspect makes a smart choice; he invokes his right to request an attorney. But later, he starts chatting with officers about something unrelated, say the need to use the restroom. Shortly, the officer begins asking questions in a conversational and relaxed tone. Under Miranda, once you invoke your right to counsel, the police may not reinitiate that interrogation. However, beware, you can always voluntarily waive your rights by agreeing to answer questions or making voluntary statements.
#3 – Detained or Not
Finally, perhaps the most common scenario is in situations where the individual is not clear on whether he or she is being detained. For instance, during a routine vehicle stop, an officer demands the individual get out of the vehicle and wait at the rear of the car. Next, the officer tells the person that he or she is not free to leave, but begins asking questions. The key to Miranda is that police may not interrogate someone in custody without first advising them of their rights. Therefore, the question is really about when that person is in custody. The law says it happens when you have a reasonable expectation that you are not free to go.
Speak to a Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer Now
If you’ve been arrested and charged with a federal crime, give us a call or visit the firm online today and find out if Fort Lauderdale federal crime attorney Bruce L. Udolf may be able to help you avoid an unnecessary or unfair conviction.