Miranda Rights: Interacting with Police

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by | Jul 2, 2019 | Criminal Law

The attorneys at GillespieShields practice family, employment, civil, criminal, and immigration law.

What are Your Miranda Rights?

It is important to know and understand your Miranda rights when interacting with the police. Ever since the Miranda case in the 1960s, the police are required to read people their rights when placing them under arrest if they want to use their statements against them. The first and most important of these rights is the right to remain silent. This is followed by a warning that anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. Most of the time your rights are read to you when there is no criminal defense attorney present.

The Fifth Amendment in the United States Bill of Rights guarantees the right against self-incrimination. It is important that you not waive this right. Remember, the police are trained to elicit confessions from people. That’s why getting a criminal defense attorney before you talk to police may save you a lot of headaches.

It’s important to realize, however, that there are circumstances where you may not be read your rights. You may be arrested and held for hours before an officer comes to question you. That doesn’t mean your rights don’t exist. If you simply say, “I want to speak to a lawyer”, the police officer has to stop questioning you and wait for your legal representation.

Why Should You Insist On Your Miranda Rights in Arizona?

Innocent people may assume that if they can just explain themselves, they will be able to talk their way out of the situation. This is usually a grave mistake. In your haste to explain yourself, you can easily say something against your interests. It is important to understand that if a police officer has decided to arrest you, you will not be able to talk him or her out of it. However, if the officer is still undecided, you can absolutely talk him or her into arresting you by waiving your right to remain silent. Innocent people talk themselves into getting arrested all the time.

Many people may assume that if they are innocent, that the police will be on their side. That is unfortunately not the case. The police have the responsibility to enforce the law and investigate crimes. This means that if they are asking to speak with you about a crime, chances are they either think you did it or that you may know who did.

For these and other reasons, you need to get a criminal defense attorney and let them do the talking.

Miranda Rights and Your Right to a Criminal Defense Attorney

The second part of the Miranda warning is a reminder of your right to an attorney, with the caveat that if you cannot afford a criminal defense attorney, one will be appointed for you. Do not waive your right to counsel. That’s waiving away the right to have a criminal defense attorney by your side. If the police insist that they just want to talk to you, you may let them know you would be happy to speak with them in the presence of your attorney.

Innocent people may confuse law enforcement’s pursuit of a criminal case with the pursuit of the truth. The system is not perfect. If the State has decided to charge you with a crime, it means they suspect that you are truly guilty and that justice will be served by convicting you of the crime. They may not look beyond you to see other suspects or to calculate extenuating circumstances.

Waiving your right to counsel generally ensures that the prosecution is able to throw the book at you. Remember, it is the prosecutor’s job to ensure the State proves its case. Criminal defense attorneys are trained legal professionals who understand the complexities of the court system. They are well-equipped to advocate for your rights.

Contact a Well-qualified Criminal Defense Attorney in Phoenix

If you stand accused of a crime, remember your Miranda Rights. You need the support of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney at GillespieShields today!

In addition to criminal law, the attorneys at Gillespie, Shields, Goldfarb, & Taylor are skilled in family, civil, probate, employment and immigration law. They are a fixture of the community and serve the Phoenix and Mesa areas. Schedule your consultation today.


The information contained on this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for legal advice concerning your individual situation. We welcome you to contact us via phone, electronic mail, or through this website. However, contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send us confidential information until such time as an attorney-client relationship is established.


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