Americans all around the world were glued to their television when news broke about the Boston bombing suspect's capture and arrest.
On Friday, law enforcement agents began questioning the suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, without reading him his Miranda rights. Their decision not to "Mirandize" Tsarnaev has ignited much debate. Many wondered whether questioning Tsarnaev without reading him his Miranda rights was legal.
I would like to shed some light about Miranda rights and its Public Safety Exception.
What are your Miranda rights?
Miranda Rights are national police requirements ordered by the US Supreme Court in the 1966 case, Miranda v. Arizona. When an individual is arrested, law enforcement agents must warn them that they have the right to remain silent, that any thing they say could be used against them in a court of law, that they have the right to contact a lawyer and that if they cannot afford a lawyer, that one will be provided before any questioning if so desired. Failure to issue the Miranda warning renders evidence so obtained to not be admissible in the court.
When should Miranda Rights Be Read?
Miranda Rights need to be read by law enforcement officials to an individual who is a criminal suspect and in police custody before they begin to question the individual about the crime.
When are you considered to be in custody?
A person is considered to be in police custody if he or she does not reasonably feel free to leave. If a reasonable person believes that his or her freedom to leave is restrained, they are most likely in custody.
Why wasn't the Boston bombing suspect read his Miranda Rights Before Being Questioned?
According to Huffington Post, the bombing suspect met the Public Safety Exception to Miranda. Under the public safety exception, law enforcement agents may question a suspect before reading their Miranda Rights if there is an “objectively reasonable need to protect the police or the public from immediate danger.”
What are your thoughts? Do you think his rights were violated?
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