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Police Manipulation of Miranda Rights

Our Miranda rights exist to protect us from ourselves. Being informed that we have the “right to remain silent” and that “anything [we] say or do can be used against [us] in a court of law” is essentially a way of assuring us that we are under no obligation to give evidence of our guilt, but that if it is freely offered, it will mostly likely factor in a case against us.

However, despite being uttered in almost every arrest scene portrayed on television or in film, Miranda rights are far more complex than most Americans realize. The line between incrimination and self-incrimination remains fuzzy to the average citizen – “pleading the fifth,” for example, does not apply to cases of drawing blood for individuals suspected of driving under the influence.

Such complexities and legal nuances often play to an officer’s advantage. Many law enforcement officials are well-versed in techniques for getting a suspect to waive his or her rights, without necessarily knowing that he or she has done so.

Two of the more common approaches that police may take here include:

  • Speaking at length about the (frequently speculative or even fabricated) evidence against a suspect, usually in the form of accusations and claims that he or she is already as good as convicted. Only after this will the officer then ask the suspect if he or she wishes to speak. Desiring to refute the officer’s allegations, the suspect is likely to begin talking.
  • Not saying anything at all, especially in an interrogation room. If an officer simply sits down, remaining silent and starts filling out paperwork, for example, the suspect will often become agitated or nervous and being to speak of his or her own volition.

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If you or someone you know has been charged with driving under the influence or a similar offense and you feel that your Miranda rights may have been violated, contact experienced Rhode Island DUI lawyer Matthew Marin today by calling 401-287-4384 for more information.