Introduction to the “Miranda Rule” in Criminal Cases

The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution was forever transformed in the famous case of Miranda v. Arizona (1966) 384 U.S. 436, 478-479.  In that landmark case, Chief Supreme Court Justice Warren formulated a rule which, though revolutionary at the time, has now become firmly embedded in our national consciousness:

“[W]hen an individual is taken into (1) custody or otherwise deprived of his freedom in any significant way, and is subjected to (2) interrogation, the privilege against self-incrimination is jeopardized. Procedural protections must be employed to protect the privilege, and unless other fully effective means are adopted to notify the person of his right to remain silent and to assure that the exercise of that right will be scrupulously honored, the following measures are required. He must be warned prior to any questioning that he has the right to remain silent, that anything he says may be used against him in a court of law, and, that he has the right to the presence of an attorney, and that if he cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed for him prior to questioning if he so desires. . . .”

Once warnings have been given, the subsequent procedure is clear. If the individual indicates in any manner, at any time prior to or during questioning, that he wished to remain silent, the interrogation must cease. . . . If the individual states that he wants an attorney, the interrogation must cease until the lawyer is present. . . . [U]nless and until such  admonitions and waiver are demonstrated by the prosecution at trial,  no evidence obtained as a result of the interrogation can be used against him” No other Court case in criminal procedure has created more of a controversy.  Criminal Attorneys even today continue to expand and define the ruling set forth in the Miranda case.

About thetorranceattorney

Matthew Ruff is a Torrance criminal defense attorney located near the 405 freeway on Crenshaw Blvd. Focusing on DUI and serious criminal cases for over twenty years. In addition to criminal cases, Matthew also defends clients at the DMV.
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