The Supreme Court today significantly restricted the police protocol most of you know as “my rights.” You rights, also known as your Miranda rights, stem from the 1960s case that said that police had to give some kind of warning before engaging in custodial interrogation (asking questions after arrest).  Since then, “You have a right to remain silent” has become part of our national culture.

Today, though, the Supreme Court changed the dynamic. The cops still have to read you your rights, but you have to speak up if you want to use them. If you want to remain silent, you have to speak up and tell the officers that you want to be silent and you want a lawyer. Otherwise, police violation of your rights may not do you any good in court.

If you want to read the decision, you can find it here.

Meanwhile, please remember, when the police tell you you don’t have to talk and whatever you say will be used against you, THEY MEAN IT.  It is really better to “invoke” your rights by saying you want a lawyer and don’t want to answer questions. They may threaten to put you in jail if you don’t talk, and they may take you to jail for a day or two, but that is a small price to pay to save yourself from much worse consequences — criminal convictions and possible prison.

Chris

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