Miranda rights refer to the constitutionally protected rights of individuals in police custody in the United States. These rights ensure that you are aware of your rights against self-incrimination and your right to legal counsel when facing criminal interrogation.
When being detained or arrested, law enforcement officers must convey these rights to you, thereby safeguarding your Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination and your Sixth Amendment right to counsel.
You must invoke your rights
Should you desire to invoke your Miranda rights, the process is rather straightforward. You must verbally state your understanding and express your desire to remain silent and consult with an attorney. You may convey this intent by simply stating, “I invoke my right to remain silent and I want to speak with an attorney.” Be aware that remaining silent or refusing to answer questions without explicitly invoking your rights may not be sufficient.
After you invoke your rights
Following your invocation of Miranda rights, law enforcement officers must cease their interrogation. They are legally required to respect your decision and must not attempt to force you to make any further statements from you until you have had the opportunity to consult with an attorney. The protection is absolute, so they can’t just call in new officers to resume the questioning.
Miranda rights serve as a crucial safeguard to protect your constitutional rights when facing criminal interrogation. Statements that are drawn out of you after you invoke your rights can’t be used in a criminal case against you. Because of this, you may be able to include that fact in your defense strategy.