Your Miranda Rights

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to have an attorney present during questioning. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you.”

Many of us can recognize these words from the many cop shows on TV or the investigations acted out in modern movies. However, many Americans do not know where this line comes from, or what it really means in a legal sense. 

The origin of American citizen’s Miranda Rights comes from the Supreme Court case Miranda v. Arizona in 1966. A man by the name is Ernesto Miranda was taken into custody by police in 1963 for kidnapping and raping an unknown woman at a bus stop.  Under police interrogation, Miranda admitted that he committed the crime without the understanding that he did not need to speak to police without his lawyer, let alone incriminate himself with his confession.  His confession was the only evidence used in his trial, without witness or any other proof, and was convicted of the crime. The case was taken to the Supreme Court where it was decided that Miranda had been intimidated by police and that a new trial should be held for him, where other evidence would be submitted for review. The Supreme Court made a law in which the words above must be read to anyone arrested by police, along with a affirmation by the arrested that they do understand their rights. You have the right to remain silence and the right to a lawyer. 

The Fifth Amendment reads:

“No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury… nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law…”

Our Miranda rights is just a reminder to citizens that even though you may be under arrest, may be guilty or innocent, may be rich or poor, we have the right to remain silent. The Fifth Amendment protects us from ourselves, in essence, when emotions and tensions are running high. 

If you would like more information on Miranda Rights contact [] a Rhode Island criminal defense lawyer James Powderly who can help you understand your rights under the law. 

Source by Joseph Devine
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