When Miranda Rights Do Not Apply
It’s a common misconception that Miranda rights always apply to every conversation that you have with police officers. The truth is that while officers are required to issue Miranda warnings while they are making arrests or before interrogating anyone who is in custody, there are times when they can have conversations with suspects without these rights offering suspects protection from incriminating themselves.
For example, officers commonly arrive to the scene of a crime and ask something like, “what happened here?” Miranda laws don’t apply to these types of general questions when law enforcement officers are just trying to get a feel for what happened. Therefore, any incriminating responses possible suspects voluntarily offer up at that time would still likely be admissible for use in court. Even if officers ask more than just the general “what’s up” kind of questions, there’s still a chance that Miranda rights will not apply if the questions being asked are just part of routine inquiry at potential crime sites.
Determining whether questions are “routine” or not depends on the circumstances involved in the case. If the suspect is in custody or if officers are asking questions they know would likely lead to incriminating responses, then they are not considered to be routine questions and suspects have full Miranda rights.
There are also exceptions for Miranda rights in cases where there are public safety issues at stake. In these cases, officers may not need to issue warnings because time is of the essence.
To learn more about your Miranda rights and when they do or do not apply, speak with a knowledgeable Orlando criminal defense lawyer at the Law Offices of Salazar & Kelly.