Miranda Rule Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Miranda Rule's effectiveness in America today [...] why the Miranda is well tailored to guard against constitutional violations, and will present an argument for the Miranda rule. The Miranda Rule, first adopted in 1966, is still a contentious ruling in today's criminal justice system. While some critics of the rule feel it is not a deterrent to coercion of information from a suspect, most experts believe the Miranda Rule was created with a solid foundation to help ensure a suspect's rights are not violated and the information from any suspect is admissible in court. The Miranda Rule guards the criminal justice system just as well as it guards against rights violations and because of this, it is vital to the quick and efficient trying of cases. The Miranda Rule is controversial, but it is a necessity in modern policing, and it helps both the suspect and the police.

The Miranda Rule

The Miranda Rule was created in 1966 as a result of the Supreme Court case "Miranda vs. Arizona." The court required law enforcement officers and agencies making an arrest to inform a victim of his rights, in accord with the Fifth Amendment, which guarantees freedom from self-incrimination. The Miranda statement (often simply referred to as "Miranda") is usually a version something like this, read to detainees before they are questioned: "You have the right to remain silent. If you give up the right to remain silent, anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you desire an attorney and cannot afford one, an attorney will be obtained for you before police questioning" (FindLaw). Miranda has become common knowledge to most Americans because of its' constant use on most police and detective television shows. Just about everyone knows about Miranda, but not everyone knows why it is such and effective tool for law enforcement agencies and the criminal justice system.

Miranda has come under fire from critics ever since it passed, and there have been numerous attempts to overturn the decision, because some law enforcement agencies feel it impedes the confession and evidence process. However, the judicial system has resisted overturning Miranda for over nearly 40 years, and it seems to have a solid foundation in America's police departments. One expert notes, "Even many conservative critics of the Warren Court, while still adamantly opposed to extending the exclusionary rule to the states, have grudgingly conceded that Miranda was not so bad and seem to have accepted that the reforms of the criminal trial were, by and large, a good idea" (Bradley 37). Miranda ensures suspects maintain their rights by giving them the power to not speak until there is an attorney present, and acknowledges they have the right to an attorney, even if they cannot afford one. This ensures the police cannot "coerce" confessions out of suspects. If they do, the information may not be admissible in court, and the case may even be dismissed for lack of acceptable evidence. The Supreme Court cited several documents that endorse and back-up the Fifth Amendment self-incrimination rights, including the U.S. Constitution, the English Bill of Rights, Cohens v. Virginia, and many other more recent judicial decisions.

As it has aged, Miranda has gained the approval of many groups who initially opposed it. By 1993, it received the endorsement of four national police organizations and fifty former prosecutors, when they formally asked the Supreme Court to continue permitting Miranda claims in federal habeas corpus actions (Thomas 1). This indicates that Miranda, while still creating controversy, has become mainstream in policing, and it is no longer seen as the problem it has in the past. As one expert notes, "Without Miranda, courts would need to evaluate each arrest process in order to make sure that no illegal coercion takes place. Reading a suspect's rights protects both the law officer and the suspect from wrongful prosecution" (Carrillo). Thus, the Miranda decision, rather than impeding police procedures, has actually streamlined them, and created a more effective judicial process.

Recently, Miranda has come into use internationally, specifically as a result of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States. U.S. law agencies, including the FBI, have been conducting investigations oversees, and the question has…

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