March 8, 2011 By Wallin & Klarich

The simple answer is because there are some cops that will violate your rights because they refuse to follow the law. However, other police officers will violate your rights because they know that the conservative majority on the United States Supreme Court will likely support their conduct. Let me give you just one quick example of how recent court decisions have given the police more power to violate your rights when you are stopped or arrested.

Many years ago the US Supreme Court decided People vs. Miranda and in that decision the court made it clear that before law enforcement could question you they had to read you your “right to remain silent and right to a lawyer”. You had the right to tell the officers you didn’t want to speak to them. However, over the past two decades the Miranda decision has lost most of its legal impact due to the more conservative current Supreme Court wiping away many of the protections of Miranda.

The more recent Miranda rulings state that unless you are 100% perfectly clear that you want a lawyer, then Miranda doesn’t protect you. Case after case has come down on the side of law enforcement in situations where a “reasonable person” would clearly see that the suspect was asking for a lawyer but the courts have said, ‘Sorry, the admission or confession comes in, because the accused was not “clear enough’.

Even if your Miranda rights are violated, recent court decisions have held that if you choose to testify the statements you made to the police (after they violated your Miranda rights) are still admissible in court. What this means is that police officers are encouraged to violate your Miranda rights to obtain admissions or confessions because they know that this will limit your options at trial.

The bottom line when dealing with law enforcement is to never waive your rights and never speak to them. You have a legal obligation to provide them with your name and identifying information, such as your drivers license. After that, you have no legal obligation to speak to police officers. At Wallin and Klarich, for over thirty years we have been urging our clients to be smart and to ‘keep their mouths’ shut when asked any questions by law enforcement. In most interactions with the police there is no tape recorder being used. This means if you speak to the police the police will prepare a report and will detail what ‘they heard you say’. In many cases what the police report you told them IS NOT WHAT YOU TOLD THEM and almost always ends up implicating you in some sort of unlawful conduct. The downside of following this advise is that often the police officer will be upset with you and may choose to arrest you. However, in the long run you are MUCH BETTER OFF by not speaking to a police officer and when and if you are read your Miranda rights very clearly repeat over and over you do not wish to waive your rights and you will not speak to them without your lawyer present. In fact after saying that, say nothing else at all.

Of course, the next step is you may be arrested and you will be given the legal right to make certain phone calls within a short time after your arrest. You should make the first call to Wallin and Klarich at 877-466-5245 so we can begin to help you. Please remember that even if you are arrested, in the long run you will almost always help your case by refusing to speak to law enforcement about the facts of the case.

If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime, it is imperative that you contact our criminal defense attorneys at Wallin and Klarich. Wallin & Klarich will help protect your rights and find the best defense strategy for your case.  For over 30 years, our attorneys have handled many types of these cases with exceptional results. Please call us at (877) 466-5245 or visit our website at We will be there when you call.

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