Understanding The Miranda Decision
Examining Case Law: Miranda v. Arizona, 384, U.S. 436 (1966). Almost everyone who has watched a crime drama on television can recall at least one pivotal moment, perhaps at the episode’s climax, when a suspect is arrested and his rights are read to him. Many Americans can recite these legal warnings from memory, even though few have ever been arrested or interrogated by police officers. Officers have not always been required to inform individuals of their “right to remain silent” and other legal protections. This was mandated through a Supreme Court decision in the case of Miranda v. Arizona, 384, U.S. 436 (1966), a decision that many in law enforcement said would prevent them from ever gaining another voluntary confession. Though controversial at the time, requiring officers to Mirandize (provide legal warnings to) an individual seems rather cliché today. Read more about the facts of this case at https://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-supreme-court/384/436.html (Links to an external site.)
After reading about this landmark case, answer the following questions:
- What is the Constitutional issue being decided in this case (as delineated by Chief Justice Warren in section I)?
- When is it necessary for officers to read an individual his or her rights?
- In your opinion, what are the benefits and drawbacks associated with this decision?