Miranda warning

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The Miranda warning (also referred to as Miranda rights) is a warning that is required to be given by police in the United States to criminal suspects in police custody (or in a custodial interrogation) before they are interrogated to inform them about their constitutional rights. In Miranda v. Arizona, the Supreme Court of the United States held that an elicited incriminating statement by a suspect will not constitute admissible evidence unless the suspect was informed of the right to decline to make self-incriminatory statements and the right to legal counsel (hence the so-called "Miranda rights"), and makes a knowing, intelligent and voluntary waiver of those rights.[Note 1] The Miranda warning is not a condition of detention, but rather a safeguard against self-incrimination; as a result, if law enforcement officials decline to offer a Miranda warning to an individual in their custody, they may still interrogate that person and act upon the knowledge gained, but may not use that person's statements to incriminate him or her in a criminal trial.

As of a June 1, 2010, U.S. Supreme Court decision (Berghuis v. Thompkins), suspects still have the 5th Amendment right to remain silent, and the 6th Amendment right to the assistance of counsel; however, if a suspect waives these rights and interrogation begins, the right to halt further questioning by the police must be exercised explicitly, by invoking the 5th and/or 6th Amendment rights.


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