While no one wants to ever find himself or herself facing a criminal investigation or an arrest, it is beneficial to know what to expect from Kentucky law enforcement and what your rights are in that situation. One of the most important rights you have as a defendant are those pertaining to the 5th Amendment, known as Miranda rights. Regardless of the nature of the case against you or what law enforcements thinks you’ve done, you have certain constitutional rights they must respect.
A violation of your rights during an arrest can compromise the entire case against you. If police did not read you your rights while taking you into custody or violated other rights, you may use this as grounds to challenge your arrest, incarceration and possibly other elements of the prosecution’s case. When you know and understand your rights, you will be in a stronger position to defend your interests during and after an arrest.
What do Miranda rights mean for you?
The term Miranda rights come from a landmark Supreme Court case from 1966 in which the court determined that police must inform someone in custody of his or her 5th Amendment rights. The 5thAmendment shields one from self-incrimination, which means that a person in custody does not have to answer certain questions when questioned by police. Miranda rights include the following:
- The right to remain silent when questioned by law enforcement
- Anything said by the person in custody could be used against him or her in court
- Each person taken into custody has the right to an attorney
- The court will appoint an attorney if the individual in custody cannot afford one
Your Miranda rights mean that in the event that you are arrested and taken for questioning by police, you do not have to answer anything they ask. You can request an attorney at any time, and police must respect your request.
Your defense options
Whether you are facing formal criminal charges or you believe that your 5th Amendment rights were violated, you do not have to remain silent. A violation of your rights could be grounds for a dismissal of any charges against you. It is in your interests to take immediate action to learn about the specific defense options available to you and how you can fight for the best possible outcome to your case.