“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 an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?”
You have heard this on television, you probably vaguely remember your Miranda rights from a civics class, but do you actually know what they mean or when they should be used? If you have been pulled over, you were most likely not read your Miranda rights, and that’s ok…. At least initially. Stay tuned for next week’s blog to learn about custodial interrogations without Miranda Rights and potential remedies.
In State v. Dawson, the Montana Supreme Court held that Miranda warnings were not required when an investigative stop is routine and the detention is brief. These situations do not fall within the ambit of a custodial interrogation requiring Miranda warnings. State v. Maile, 2017 MT 154, 13. What does this bit of legal jargon mean for you? You still have the right to remain silent, the officer just does not have any obligation to tell you until they have probable cause to arrest. Should you give a police officer your name and exchange pleasantries if the situation so requires? Yes. But be aware that you do not need to be any more forthcoming than you wish in these circumstances.
Are you in a spot of trouble thanks to admissions flowing from your mouth like a faucet? Contact the attorneys at Bryan, diStefano & Mattingley today. They have years of experience dealing with violations of rights and helping their clients navigate through the court system to achieve the best possible outcome in each circumstance.