If you have watched any crime show, you have probably heard someone “read their rights.” But, exactly what are these and why do the police narrate them during the arrest or interrogation? Most importantly, are the police required by law to read them to a suspect?
The Miranda warning is read to the suspect during an arrest or when they are in custody. Usually, the suspect is issued with this statement to preserve the integrity and admissibility of any statements they make to the police.
But what exactly are your Miranda rights during an arrest?
Miranda rights are intended to protect the suspect from making self-incriminating statements during the arrest and interrogation. These include reminding the suspect of the following:
- Their right to legal representation
- That anything they say can be used against them during the trial
- That the court will provide them with legal representation if they cannot afford their own
So, what happens if the police do not inform you of your Miranda rights?
A common misconception is that your case will be dismissed if the police did not recite the Miranda rights during your arrest or interrogation. This is not entirely true. The police’s failure to inform you of your Miranda rights will not in itself lead to the dismissal of your case.
However, if the police fail to recite your Miranda rights, then the prosecution may not use for most purposes anything you said as evidence during your trial. Of course, there may be a few exceptions like when public safety is at stake.
Being indicted and charged with a criminal offense is a big deal. Knowing your legal options can help you protect your rights and build a strong defense against your charges.