Miranda Warning Q&A

Q: I was not read my Miranda warnings after being arrested. Can my charges be dropped?

Criminal Defense LawyerA: Miranda warnings generally require a police or other enforcement officer to advise a suspect about the suspect’s right to remain silent, the suspect’s right to an attorney (public defender, if cannot afford an attorney), the suspect’s ability to waive his or her rights; and a warning that what is said to them can be used against the suspect. However, the police are only required to give Miranda warnings when a person is in custody (not free to leave) and the person is being interrogated. Miranda warnings are not required when the suspect has information about an imminent threat to public safety. Miranda warnings are also not required when the person being questioned is not in custody. Thus, if you are not in custody (you are not being detained and are free to leave), a police officer does not have to give you Miranda warnings before asking you questions. However, in your case, you stated you were arrested, and thus clearly “in custody.” Thus, Miranda warnings are required after the point that you were no longer free to leave, however, only if you were being interrogated. Basic questions about your identity (name and address) do not require Miranda warnings. Also, any statements you make spontaneously without being asked can be used against you and do not require Miranda warnings. Thus, whether Miranda warnings were required and whether you can exclude incriminating statements will depend on whether you were in custody, being interrogated and/or whether you were simply volunteering information.

Here at Trachtman Law, we have the experience in criminal defense law to help you with your case. Please call our office at 702-474-0404 and we can set an appointment to discuss in more detail the events that resulted in your arrest.