Miranda Rights - What to Do If You Are Arrested

Tim O'Brien and Kathleen Avoles, Attorneys at Bakke Norman, S.C. discuss the Miranda Warning and what to do if you are arrested.

Kate: You've all heard the police on TV reading someone their rights. They're called the Miranda Rights, for a famous United States Supreme Court decision. If you're like most people, you can recite those rights in sync with the officer. But, what do those rights really mean, and when do they actually apply.

The Miranda decision actually provides more than one right to a person under arrest. Let's break down the Miranda rights one at a time.

  1. You have the right to remain silent.
  2. Anything you say can, and will be used against you in a court of law.
  3. You have the right to consult with an attorney before questioning and to have a lawyer present with you during questioning.
  4. If you cannot afford to hire a lawyer one will be appointed to represent you at public expense before or during any questioning, if you so wish.
  5. If you decide to answer questions now without a lawyer present, you have the right to stop the questioning and remain silent at any time you wish, and the right to ask for and have a lawyer at any time you wish, including during questioning.

Are we saying you should never speak to a police officer? No.

While police officers are trained to obtain as much information as quickly as possible, they are also trained to uphold your rights if you properly assert them. They will not punish you for asserting those rights. Remember even if you have done nothing wrong, it is still safer to give any statement with your attorney present.