When a police officer is arresting you in California, they have to give you the Miranda warning before asking you any questions. However, some police officers and detectives will attempt to ask you questions first before they tell you your Miranda rights. Here’s what you need to know about this type of interrogation.
What are your Miranda rights?
There are certain facts that the police officer must make you aware of immediately after an arrest. Any other law enforcement officer who will question you must first convey to you that:
- You have the right to remain silent.
- Anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law.
- You have a right to have a criminal defense attorney during interrogations.
- If you can’t afford an attorney, the state will appoint one for you if you want.
It doesn’t matter whether you are in your car, in the middle of an open field, at a crime scene or in jail; as long as you are deprived of freedom of action in any significant way, the police officer must read your Miranda rights before they ask you any question. If they don’t, they can’t use your statement in court. Criminal law considers that statement or confession inadmissible.
Two-step interrogation technique
Some police officers will ask you questions first, read the Miranda rights and then proceeds with the interrogation. As seen in the case of People v. Sumagang, the court can dismiss everything you said before and after if your Miranda rights were not made known at the proper time.
The only time your confession can be admissible is when public safety is at issue. For instance, if there is a gun or bomb that puts the public’s life at risk, the police officer can question you about its whereabouts before reading your Miranda rights at that moment.
Basically, the two-step interrogation technique is illegal. A police officer must read you your Miranda rights after your arrest and before asking you any questions.