Arrested and not read your Miranda rights? Criminal lawyer, Aaron J. Boria is here to protect your rights (734) 453-7806.
What are Miranda Rights?
If you have been arrested or are in police custody and the police are asking you questions or interrogating you then they need to read you your Miranda rights. If the police interrogate you without reading you your Miranda warnings then the statements you make cannot be used against you at trial.
Your Miranda rights are meant to protect you against self-incrimination, which is part of your 5th Amendment Right.
Miranda v Arizona was a United States Supreme Court case where the Court ruled that statements made by a suspect to police while in custody were only admissible at trial if the suspect was made aware of their legal rights.
Specifically, your Miranda rights are:
- The right to remain silent
- Anything that you say can be used against you in court
- The right to have an attorney present during questioning
- If you cannot afford an attorney then one will be appointed to you
How does Miranda Work?
Miranda only has to be read if you are under arrest or in police custody, so Miranda probably wouldn’t apply to a situation where an officer is just talking to you during a traffic stop or while walking down the street unless they put you in a cop car or handcuff you.
Miranda also does not apply if you are volunteering information to the police without them asking you to talk.
If police to arrest you and they read you Miranda and you choose to keep talking then whatever information you give them can be used to convict you later at trial.
If police don’t mirandize you and they interrogate you while in police custody then the statements you make cannot be introduced a trial.
What happens if I was not given Miranda warnings?
If you are accused of stealing an item and it is found near you the police may interrogate you and ask you if you were the person that stole the item. If you were mirandized and you admit to stealing the item then that confession will be told to a jury at trial.
Under the same set of facts, if police did not mirandize you then your lawyer will hold a walker hearing to strike the statement from coming in based on a violation of your 5th Amendment Miranda Rights and the jury will never know about your admission.
To make things easier for your lawyer DON’T TALK TO THE POLICE!
Will a DUI be dismissed if I wasn’t read Miranda?
One of the most common questions we are asked is, will a drinking and driving case be dismissed if Miranda wasn’t read?
In the majority of DUI cases Miranda generally isn’t an issue. In a DUI evidence is your blood alcohol level and the officer’s observations. The police usually will have blood, breath, or video evidence that they can proceed on. It is actually somewhat rare that a person is given Miranda during a DUI.
The goal of Miranda is to make sure that self-incriminating statements are not used against a person without that person first being warned of the law. Miranda only applies if a person is in police custody, which usually means they are in a police car, at a police station, or not free to leave.
For example, if a person is stopped by the police on the street and freely admits to the officer they are responsible for a murder then those statements can be used against that person in trial. If on the other hand that same person is stopped by police and taken to the station without being read Miranda and then questioned by an officer then anything the person says will not be admissible to be used against them in court.
In a situation with a drinking and driving charge the standard for a conviction is a .08 blood alcohol content. The evidence the officer will try to use against you will come from chemical testing. It’s hard to imagine a situation where a person would know that their blood alcohol level is over a .08 and could verbally admit to that. For that reason a statement of, “My blood alcohol is over .08” rarely happens and probably wouldn’t be accurate anyway. Drinking alcohol isn’t illegal, and drinking and driving isn’t illegal either. It’s only illegal to be over the .08 limit. A person cannot be convicted alone based on a statement that they had been drinking.
Additionally, courts will rarely conclude that a person is in custodial interrogation when being investigated for DUI at the scene during field sobriety testing, which means any statement made will come in and Miranda is not required. If however, that same person were to make admissions at the police station when questions by an officer than that statement should not come into court unless it was proceeded by Miranda.
Again, the problem is that Miranda does not apply to chemical testing, so statement or no statement, you have to be able to beat the chemical testing.
In most situations a DUI will be beaten on the grounds of fighting the stop made by the officer, the arrest, and the chemical testing.
If you have been charged with a crime then you need to contact Michigan criminal defense lawyer, Aaron J. Boria. We fight for our clients and we get results! (734) 453-7806.