Understanding Miranda Rights
4 Crucial Facts to Know About Your Miranda Rights
“You have the right to remain silent.” Thus begin the Miranda rights, also known as the Miranda warning, which are typically read as a police officer is making an arrest. The Miranda rights inform the individual facing arrest about her or his rights while in police custody; an individual may choose to not answer questions and to consult with a Bergen County criminal lawyer in order to avoid potentially saying something incriminating. Because officers are required to read the Miranda rights before interrogating someone in police custody, there are several circumstances under which an individual could be protected by the rights themselves or by an officer’s refusal to read them. If you are pulled over by a police officer and charged with DWI contact a Bergen County criminal lawyer and keep the following pointers in mind, as they may save your case.
1. Even If Your Rights Are Read, You Do Not Have to Respond.
It is highly recommended that you answer any and all questions honestly that an officer asks you after you have been pulled over. After you have been arrested, however, the situation changes. The police are supposed to read the defendant her or his Miranda rights before the interrogation can begin. Some interrogation questions might ask you where you were, how much you drank, and if you were taking any medication. Questions like these after your arrest become subject to the Miranda rights, meaning that you do not have to answer them once you have been taken into custody.
2. Your Charge Will Not Be Dismissed If You Were Not Read Your Rights and No Questions Were Asked.
If the police officer does not ask you questions like those above, then the fact that he or she did not read you the Miranda rights is not relevant. In the absence of interrogation, your case will not be dismissed simply because the officer did not read you your rights.
3. You May Have an Advantage If You Were Not Read Your Rights and Questions Were Asked.
If you are arrested and interrogated even though the arresting officer did not read you your Miranda rights, there could be an issue. If you have been placed under arrest, any answers to these questions are subject to a hearing. At the hearing, it will be determined if those statements can be suppressed and therefore ineligible to be used against you at a trial. A judge would determine whether your rights were violated, and if so, there is a chance that your case may be dismissed or reconsidered.
4. You Can Use the Law to Your Benefit Even If Your Rights Were Read.
People can fight their cases, even if they have in fact been drinking and driving. Not every case is perfect for the police and the prosecutor. There are constitutional rules in place that protect all of us, and any mistake made by the police while you were in custody can bolster your claim.
There is no excuse for choosing to drive while intoxicated, and one of the many responsibilities of the police is to curtail this dangerous behavior. However, simply because you have been taken into custody, it does not follow that you lose all your rights as an individual. The police are mandated to respect your rights, and when that respect is lacking, you gain leverage in your case. Remember that after you are arrested, you are under no obligation to answer any questions until you have consulted with a Bergen County criminal lawyer. If you are uncertain about your rights while you are in police custody, contact attorney Carl Spector in order to receive the defense you need and resolve your case.