People who are being detained or interrogated by police officers have very specific rights that must be complied with. One of these requirements is that cops read the individual their Miranda rights. This is a list of specific rights that are contained within the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution.
The Fifth Amendment gives individuals the right to avoid self-incrimination. This means that you don’t have to answer questions that could lead to a criminal conviction. In order to exercise your Miranda rights, you must clearly invoke them.
How do you invoke your Miranda rights?
You have to speak up to tell the police officer that you’re invoking your Miranda rights. Your statement must make it obvious to a reasonable person that you choose not to speak to the police. Some examples include:
- I choose not to speak to the police until I consult with my lawyer.
- I invoke my Fifth Amendment rights.
- I choose to remain silent and not answer any questions.
Merely remaining silent doesn’t invoke your rights. In fact, not speaking up could be construed as a waiver of your right to remain silent. Perceived waiving of your rights means questioning can continue until you invoke your rights.
Once you clearly invoke your right to remain silent, the police officers have to stop questioning you. They can’t call in new officers or departments to continue the interrogation.
Violations of your rights play an important role in criminal cases. If your Fifth Amendment rights were violated, that might become a key component in your defense strategy. Work with someone who understands these matters so they can assist you with the development of your strategy.