The most common misconception is that the police must read you your Miranda rights when you are arrested; this is incorrect. Miranda warning is used for the purpose of being interrogated. If the police start questioning you but have not read the Miranda warning, they cannot use anything you say as direct evidence against you in trial.
What Is the Miranda Rights?
The Miranda rights consist of:
- You have the right to remain silent
- Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law
- You have the right to an attorney
- If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided to you.
- If you decide to talk to the officers, you have the right to stop the interview at any time.
When Does Miranda Rights Go into Effect?
The questioning can take place at any time: jail, scene of crime, on the street; but only if you are in custody. If you are not in custody no Miranda warning is required. If you are stopped on the street to be questioned and give the police information about a crime before any arrest or reading of the warning, that information can be held against you.