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Published byHayden Mugge Modified over 8 years ago
Presented by Tim, and Brendan. Arizona V. Miranda
Historical Background It all started March 13, 1963 (over 47 years ago now), this was the day Ernesto Miranda was arrested in Phoenix, Arizona in connection to a Kidnapping case, however the police never informed him of his rights, nor did they tell him if the questioning was voluntary. In a lineup with several others, Miranda was chosen by the victim as the person who'd kidnapped her, and raped her ten days before. Initially Miranda knew nothing of the crime, however, after two hours of questioning by the police Miranda confessed, and at 1:30pm he wrote a written confession with details of the crime. He was subsequently arrested and put in jail, he was not afforded a lawyer at the police station, or at the preliminary hearing. At the arraignment, the judge appointed a 76 yr old lawyer named Alvin Moore, who had not practiced criminal law for over 16 yrs.
Historical Background Continued! Miranda pleads guilty for reason of insanity, a psychiatrist reports his many mental issues: Arrests for being a Peeping Tom. Attempted Rape at 15 yrs old. Dishonorably Discharged from the Army. Psychiatrist reports him impulsive with little self-control, but not insane, as he clearly knew the difference between right and wrong. Miranda's lawyer argues that as Miranda was not informed of his right to attorney his confession shouldn't be used in court. The first Jury found Miranda guilty of Kidnapping, and rape, Miranda appeals, in 1965 the case was heard by the Arizona Supreme Court.
Further Historical Background! John J. Flynn replaces Alvin Moore as Miranda's lawyer. Arizona Supreme court finds that Miranda's rights were not violated by the lower court's ruling that the confession could be used against him. Miranda appeals to the US Supreme Court. Due to mounting pressure brought on by the Escobedo ruling in June 1964, the Supreme court felt they needed to have a final ruling regarding the confession issue. Just so happens that Miranda V. Arizona was the first case in the pile of 140 cases, thus Miranda V. Arizona became the poster file of the confession issue.
Legal Question The legal question in this instance was whether or not law enforcement had to inform a suspect of their 5 th amendment rights before/during the arrest or interrogation.
The Decision “The person in custody must, prior to interrogation, be clearly informed that he has the right to remain silent, and that anything he says will be used against him in court; he must be clearly informed that he has the right to consult with a lawyer and to have the lawyer with him during interrogation, and that, if he is indigent, a lawyer will be appointed to represent him.” “If the individual indicates in any manner, at any time prior to or during questioning, that he wishes to remain silent, the interrogation must cease... If the individual states that he wants an attorney, the interrogation must cease until an attorney is present. At that time, the individual must have an opportunity to confer with the attorney and to have him present during any subsequent questioning.” - Chief Justice Earl Warren. As a result of the courts decision Miranda conviction was overturned, but was retried, and convicted again in 1967, and was sentenced to 20 to 30 years, he was paroled in 1972, and was stabbed to death in a Bar during an argument on January 31st, 1976.
The Decision – Dissent + (½ Concurred + ½ Dissent) Dissent: "Nothing in the letter or the spirit of the Constitution or in the precedents squares with the heavy-handed and one-sided action that is so precipitously taken by the Court in the name of fulfilling its constitutional responsibilities." - Justice Harlan. Justice Byron White argued that the court was creating a new constitutional right when there was no basis for such, he said “self-incrimination forbids in-custody interrogation without the warnings specified in the majority opinion and without a clear waiver of counsel has no significant support in the history of the privilege or in the language of the Fifth Amendment” ½ Concurred + ½ Dissent: Justice Tom C. Clark argued that the court was going too far, he wanted the court instead to: “consider in each case whether the police officer prior to custodial interrogation added the warning that the suspect might have counsel present at the interrogation and, further, that a court would appoint one at his request if he was too poor to employ counsel. In the absence of warnings, the burden would be on the State to prove that counsel was knowingly and intelligently waived or that in the totality of the circumstances, including the failure to give the necessary warnings, the confession was clearly voluntary.”
Precedent All suspects must be informed of their 5 th amendment rights, and the right to an Attorney prior/during any interrogation/arrest/investigation(Their “Miranda Rights”). Confessions, and arrests are void if the suspects Miranda Rights are not read to them. As of June 1st, 2010, the US supreme court decided that “criminal suspects who are aware of their right to silence and to an attorney, but choose not to "unambiguously" invoke them, may find any subsequent voluntary statements treated as an implied waiver of their rights, and which may be used in evidence.”
Public Support In this trial the ACLU(American Civil Liberties Union) argued for Miranda for the “Rights of the People”, “they reasoned that police cannot be allowed to violate people's rights, since people can't be protected if they don't know what their rights are”. In addition to the ACLU, the NDAA(National District Attorneys Association) argued against Miranda, and reasoned that “The rights of suspects must be balanced against the rights of the public to be secure”, they believed that Miranda rights would kill the legal system as suspects would consult an attorney, who would then encourage his/her client to not speak.
Judgment and Justification Personally I would have sided with the US supreme court on this issue, it wasn't fair of the police to not inform Miranda of his rights prior/during his arrest on March 13th, 1963. The written confession they made him write: “I, Ernesto A. Miranda, Do hereby swear that I make this statement voluntarily and of my own free will, with no threats, coercion, or promises of immunity and with full knowledge of my legals rights, understanding any statement I make may be used against me.” Is inherently paradoxical, if one is under threats, coercion, torture, ones torturer would clearly make the tortured say they weren't tortured! In any case they violated the 5 th amendment by not informing him of his rights, and by not affording him a lawyer at the police station, or at the preliminary hearing.
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