In many shows and movies featuring police, the classic like “you have the right to remain silent” will come out at least once.
But what exactly does this mean? Despite the popularity of this line, not many people know the purpose of the Miranda Warning.
Why do Miranda rights exist?
Miranda Warning discusses your real Miranda rights. These are the rights that every American citizen has when faced with the possibility of a police interrogation or interview.
The Miranda rights exist to protect people from the threat of self-incrimination. Despite what police may say, any person may self-incriminate by accident, even people who have nothing to do with the crime in question. Thus, the primary purpose of these protections serves to keep people from getting forced into interviews with police that they cannot navigate.
What are the Miranda rights?
To help with that, Miranda rights first protect a person’s right to remain silent. What does this mean? In essence, the police cannot force a person to participate in an interrogation. If a person invokes their Miranda rights, they can keep silent for the duration of the interrogation and officers cannot force them to engage in the conversation.
Do note, however, that this does not mean anything said during this period cannot get used in court. After invoking the Miranda rights, it is important to actually remain silent to continue avoiding self-incrimination.
Next, Miranda rights protect a person’s access to legal representation. It is difficult for people to know how to interact with law enforcement safely, but attorneys have this experience. Of course, attorneys also cost quite a lot.
By invoking the Miranda rights, the state will assign an attorney to those who cannot afford one, providing an extra layer of protection in police interviews.