A Short Guide to the Miranda Rights
When you are arrested, something that you should be read are the famous Miranda rights. This is actually a warning that police will give you after you’ve been arrested and you’re in custody. This warning’s purpose will depend on if you’re the officer or suspect. If you’re the suspect, it’s reminding you that you can remain silent per the 5th Amendment and you shouldn’t incriminate yourself. If you’re the officer, it helps with preserving your statement’s admissibility in the criminal proceeding.
The police aren’t usually your enemy. But if you’ve shot someone in self-defense, they’re usually not your friend. So the things you say may have serious consequences.
The wording of this warning can vary based on where you are. Each of the jurisdictions have their own rules when it comes to the things officers have to say when you’ve been arrested/taken into custody. Below are the usual elements:
- It’s your right to stay silent.
- Anything you do or say might be used against you in court.
- You may consult with an attorney prior to speaking with the police. You also have the right to have them present while you’re being questioned.
- If you’re unable to afford one, an attorney will be court appointed to you before you’re questioned, if you prefer.
- If you’ve decided to answer questions right now, with the presence of an attorney, you can still stop talking when you wish until talking with an attorney.
- With the knowledge and understanding of these rights as they’ve been explained to you, do you want to answer questions without the presence of an attorney?
This seems to be straightforward. However, it’s not as cut and dry as it seems. There are a lot of exceptions and variations based on the particular situation. Even though all of it could be explained in detail, keeping things simple is best.
If you are being read your Miranda rights, chances are that you’re suspected of illegal activity and the officer’s watching and listening to everything that you do and say when they are done. Your actions and words might turn into evidence that’s used for convicting you of what they’ve suspected you’ve done.
It’s not required that you speak with them if you don’t want to. You also can choose not to speak with them until you’ve consulted a lawyer. But it doesn’t mean you simply stand there and be silent. You should avoid saying anything than the very bare minimum. Below are the only things that you should say.
- Officer, that man/woman attacked me.
- Here is the evidence (this is whatever tool that was used in the attack against you)
- I have witnesses (if you do)
- I’ll sign a complaint.
- I am happy to cooperate fully within 24 hours after my meeting with my lawyer. Until that time, I would like to assert my right according to the 5th Amendment and stay silent.
But remember that there is going to be a lot of adrenaline that is going through your body. This means that this could even backfire if you’re starting to babble about the attack and showing them evidence.
Remember that the Miranda rights, also known as Miranda warning, is simply a warning. You may be in lots of trouble, so you don’t want to begin talking since it could make it worse. If you’re doubting yourself, stop talking. Even if you really want to talk, stop. There isn’t a lot that is going to help you and chances are it is going to hurt you. So don’t take the chance and stay silent until you have spoken with your lawyer.
We are located within walking distance of the Lee County and Hendry County Jails. We offer prompt, courteous services to obtain the quick release of our clients from Southwest Florida detention facilities. We also offer bond postings outside our local area through our Surety Network. We accept all major credit cards, Western Union, and personal checks.