People who are being interrogated by police officers have very specific rights if they’re in police custody. These rights include not having to speak to the officers and being able to consult with an attorney.
The police officer has to read you your Miranda rights to ensure that you know them. You’re probably familiar with these thanks to television shows and movies that portray that exact situation.
What should you do when you’re read your rights?
In order to take advantage of those rights, you have to make it clear that you’re invoking them. You can’t just sit there and be quiet. Instead, tell the officer something along these lines:
- I choose to remain silent.
- I’m invoking my Miranda rights.
- I’m exercising my right to remain silent.
- I’m remaining silent until I consult with an attorney.
Once you invoke your Miranda rights, the questioning has to stop. They can’t simply get another officer to start asking you questions. It’s also important to note that you can’t pick and choose what questions to answer when you invoke your rights.
If you invoke your rights and the police don’t stop the interrogation, they have violated your rights. Be sure that even under this type of pressure you don’t break your silence or start to engage with them again until after you’ve met with your attorney.
Making sure you have everything in order for your defense is important when you’re facing criminal charges. Getting started as early as you can in the case can help you to avoid having to rush through the strategic planning.