While there is a small segment of the population that basically anticipates being arrested at any moment, the rest of us assume we will make it through our entire lives without ever going through a negative encounter with the police. If you are among the majority, yet recently found yourself under arrest, you are likely experiencing a range of emotions, including surprise, anger, humiliation, confusion, and fear. Like other people who have found themselves in a similar positon, you are probably full of questions and concerns – with most of those questions aimed at finding a way out of your predicament. A common question people in your situation have is “The officer never read me my right when I was arrested. Can I get my case dismissed?” The short answer is probably not; however, only an experienced Nebraska criminal defense attorney can evaluate the unique set of facts and circumstances surrounding your arrest and provide you with a concrete answer to that, and other, question. In the meantime though, it may empower you to understand more about your rights in general, and the significance of your Miranda rights in particular.
Like most people, you have undoubtedly watched countless people being placed under arrest on television or on the big screen. Consequently, you are aware that the police are supposed to read a suspect his/her Miranda rights when being placed under arrest. Unfortunately, Hollywood doesn’t always accurately portray legal issues, including how an individual’s Constitutional rights operate in real life.
The U.S. Constitution has always conferred a defendant the rights that are included in your “Miranda” rights; however, back in 1966, in Miranda v. Arizona the Supreme Court of the United States decided that police officers were required to actually advise people of these rights. What most people fail to understand, and Hollywood fails to properly portray, is that the police are only required to advise someone of their Miranda rights when the individual is in custody and the police plan to interrogate the suspect. In other words, if the police never questioned you after your arrest, the fact that they also did not read you your rights is not important. The primary purpose of reading a suspect his/her rights is to prevent the individual from saying something that might be incriminating without the benefit of an attorney first. Therefore, if the police never questioned you, the protection against self-incrimination is not irrelevant.
If, however, the police did question you after placing you under arrest and you answered the questions, the analysis changes. In that case, your attorney may attempt to get your answers excluded from a future trial. For example, if you were already in handcuffs and the police informed you that you were under arrest the answers you gave to any subsequent questions you gave would likely be inadmissible at trial because the police officer failed to read you your rights.
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Nebraska contact Petersen Criminal Defense Law 24 hours a day at 402-509-8070 to discuss your case with an experienced criminal defense attorney.
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