If you watch crime TV shows, you are probably familiar with the words “you have the right to remain silent.” These words are part of a set of rights that police must read to a person when they arrest them.
Origins of Miranda rights
In 1966, the United States Supreme Court issued a landmark decision requiring police to read people their Constitutional rights if arrested. This Constitutional requirement is known as “Miranda rights” or “Miranda warning.”
U.S. citizens have certain inherent rights provided by the Constitution of the United States and its Amendments, including Miranda rights. While most people are familiar with these rights, the landmark 1966 case established this requirement, so every arrestee knows their Constitutional rights.
Police must read the following rights to arrestees:
- You have the right to remain silent.
- Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
- You have the right to have an attorney present during questioning.
- If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be appointed for you.
The police officer must also ask the arrestee if they understand their rights. The police may ask questions about the incident only after reading these rights. The arrestee can invoke their Miranda rights at that point and police cannot continue questioning them.
Importance of Miranda rights
It is important for people to understand their rights under the United States’ Constitution. Miranda warnings are just one example of people’s rights.