April 14, 2011 By Wallin & Klarich

Once a vehicle stop has been made and a DUI investigation has commenced, the issue arises as to when a DUI suspect is “in custody” for purposes of the landmark case Miranda v. Arizona. The Miranda Court repeatedly made clear that “by custodial interrogation, we mean questioning initiated by law enforcement officers after a person has been taken into custody or otherwise deprived of his freedom of action in any significant way.”

For purposes of Miranda, it would seem clear that a motorist has been deprived of his or her freedom of action in a significant way, and thus is in custody, when a police officer conducts an investigation. DUI investigations include (a) pulling the motorist over, (b) seizing the motorist’s driver’s license and registration, (c) questioning the motorist, (d) ordering the motorist to exit the vehicle, and (e) demanding that the motorist remain outside the vehicle and perform field sobriety tests, and so on. Nonetheless, the Supreme Court has held that in the absence of extraordinary circumstances, such a detention does not constitute custodial interrogation, and thus is not protected by the Fifth Amendment and Miranda.

In order to make sure that your rights are accurately and aggressively defended after being charged with DUI in Southern California, you should contact the experienced Southern California criminal defense law firm of Wallin & Klarich. Our attorneys have been helping those accused of crimes for more than 30 years. Wallin & Klarich has the legal resources and knowledge to assist you in obtaining a successful outcome. Call Wallin & Klarich today at 888-280-6839 or visit www.wklaw.com to find out more about how we can help.

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