- March 30, 2023
- Protecting Your Rights, The Justice System
Know your rights if you face a criminal charge
Most of our readers in Michigan know that when someone is arrested, they are supposed to be “read their rights” before any questioning by law enforcement. That, of course, refers to the “Miranda rights,” so-called because of the name of the U.S. Supreme Court case in which the court decided that certain constitutional rights must be explicitly stated to arrestees. However, there are so many more constitutional rights at play in criminal cases in America.
Know your rights
Obviously, most people aren’t all that familiar with their rights in criminal cases or with the procedure of these cases in the courts. After all, many arrestees are going through the experience for the first time, although there are, of course, some people who have been arrested on many occasions. Your “right to remain silent” and other well-known Miranda rights are just the start.
For example, you are also protected from unreasonable searches and seizures. If it is later determined that evidence that is intended to be used against you was obtained in such a way that this constitutional right was violated, that evidence might be “suppressed” and, therefore, unavailable for the prosecutor’s use in any further proceedings.
You also have the right to a “speedy” trial, the right to counsel, the right to an impartial tribunal, the right to cross-examine witnesses against you—and these are just the start. Part of an initial analysis of a criminal case will typically include combing through all of the circumstances in the case to determine if your rights have been violated. If you know your rights, you can help protect them.