The Bill of Rights, which encompasses the first 10 amendments in the U. S. Constitution provides some very specific rights to people in this country. The Fifth Amendment provides people with a right to remain silent in order to avoid self-incrimination.
If you’ve watched movies or television shows that involve police officers, you’ve probably heard the cop tell the person they have the right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. These are known as Miranda rights, which are named after a prominent court case involving those rights.
What should you do if you’ve been read your Miranda rights?
If you’re reminded of your Miranda rights, you should invoke those rights. You have to do this clearly so there’s no doubt about your wishes. It isn’t enough to just be quiet. You need to say something, such as:
- I wish to remain silent.
- I invoke my Miranda rights.
- I want to speak to my lawyer.
- I choose not to speak to any police officer.
Once you invoke your Miranda rights, the police have to stop questioning you. They can’t bring in new people to resume the interrogation. If they continue to question you even after you invoke your Miranda rights, they have violated your rights. This can be used in your defense strategy.
Everyone has rights when they’re facing a charge in the criminal justice system. Working with someone who can help to ensure yours are upheld and that you’re doing what’s in your best interests. This is especially important if you’re in the United States on a visa because criminal matters can impact your ability to remain in the country.