Hostage Negotiations And The 4th, 5th And 6th Amendments Research Paper

Length: 27 pages Sources: 12 Subject: Business - Law Type: Research Paper Paper: #81405215 Related Topics: Hostage Negotiations, Miranda V Arizona, Excessive Force, Miranda Rights
Excerpt from Research Paper :

Hostage Negotiation

The 4th, 5th, and 6th amendments have had serious impacts on modern hostage negotiations and will be examined in this paper. Elements that are to be considered include promise making, incriminating statements, as well as the planting of listening devices. Graham vs. Connor, State vs. Sands, and Taylor vs. Watters, among others, are some of the court cases that will be used in this discussion. Again, the impact of these cases, as well as, three amendments on modern day hostage negotiations will be examined in this paper.

Impact of 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendments

Legal Issues Associated With Hostage Negotiations

The world of emergency mental health is full of crises, but few of these are ever as critical as hostage situations. In such occasions, lives are in danger and at risk of immediate death, and it is often at the hands of unstable, emotionally traumatized, and desperate individuals in a highly chaotic environment. Homicidal rage and suicidal despair are the most common denominators of such situations. The individuals are often under the influence of drugs or alcohol which aggravates their violent tendencies (Miller, 2005). In other incidents the perpetrator is simply a cold blooded killer who can go to any extent to achieve his aims. The hostage is at the mercy of the criminal and his immediate needs. Hostage situations can last anywhere from short hours to days, and their resolution requires skillful and focused handling. The negotiators need to resort to all methodologies and strategies in crises intervention techniques they can avail of in psychology and law enforcement domains to arrive at the most acceptable outcome (Miller, 2005).

Hostage-taking crimes do not amount to even 20% of all the critically violent ones and are resolved successfully, without fatalities. It is positive and reassuring to know that negotiation as well as containment has had success rates as high as 95% in their ability to resolve hostage situations and preserve human life. This statistic is quite remarkable across all lifesaving intervention strategies that are employed. A hostage situation is defined by three separate dangerous periods. The first period lasts for 15-45 minutes in which confusion and panic is usually very high (Miller, 2005). After that comes the second phase which is the surrender of HT's (hostage takers), when ambivalence, hair-triggered emotions, and uncooperative HT's and team members from the crisis response unit can trigger a negative outcome and turn a smooth, positive progression into an ugly one. The last phase is the tactical assault when a response team goes in to rescue hostages and capture the HT. This last and final phase is usually when the most casualties occur for two reasons specifically. The first reason is that tactical assault is the result of uncooperative HT's and an inability to resolve the situation through negotiations. Usually at this point the hostages have either already been hurt or are prone to assault. The second reason is that hostages may panic in the event of a firefight causing unintended and undue harm (Miller, 2005).

There are certain hostage crises significantly more dangerous than others are if certain factors are in place. These factors are usually related to the context out of which the hostage crisis occurs. These could include, among others, the various stages of the crises and history of the hostage taker (HT). One factor that is especially risky is whether or not the hostage was chosen specifically by the HT or if the hostage was just a victim of circumstance (Miller, 2005). This is consistent with the notion that most interpersonal violence is directed towards individuals known by the criminal perpetrator. This is very unlike the situations in which a hostage is taken in a bank robbery or some similar situation in which the hostage was simply in the wrong place in the wrong time. When the perpetrator knows the hostage they are usually out to teach them a lesson or punish them for a past incident. Workplace conflicts or romantically involved people fighting are common examples for this type of event. The perpetrators goal often at least includes intimidating or frightening the hostages, and sometimes actually injuring or killing them. Murder-suicides are even more dangerous situations. In fact, these situations often become serious hostage crises when the response units show up and surround the premises (Miller, 2005).

Impact of 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendments

4th Amendment:

The Fourth Amendment was ratified in 1791 and it aimed to provide protection for the people against political violence. The antebellum period brought on a new meaning of this amendment as the southern states used violent search-and-seizure techniques in order to regulate property, 4th amendment against the states, and forced the modern governmental bodies to respect both individuals and groups, deliberate with individuals regarding search-and-seizure policies, act upon individualized suspicion, as well as adopting the very least restrictive ways to achieve their goals (Smith, 2008).

Precise and timely knowledge is a vital part of effective crisis management. Crisis situations tend to disturb the routine information gathering processes and electronic reconnaissance like wiretaps and listening gadgets is frequently used as aids in the endeavor. Those systems can be embroiled in legal contraptions (18 U.S. Code). Federal electronic surveillance law contains a crisis procurement that permits the nonconsensual capture of phone discussions in cases including situations in which a person is in immediate danger of death or physical injury, and if the crisis block attempt has been endorsed by an abnormal state prosecutorial workforce and the application for a court request is documented inside 48 hours of the first real interference. By guaranteeing that the statutory necessities for electronic reconnaissance in regards to crisis are met it will empower the crisis administration group to keep up the stream of vital discernment that could prompt the safe resolution of the crisis (18 U.S. Code). Federal law additionally represents the utilization of listening gadgets. Without a court request or a crisis influencing the life or security of persons, Federal law forbids the nonconsensual electronic reconnaissance of oral discussions in which there is a sensible desire of protection (18 U.S. Code). Seemingly, two HT's inside their own homes talking in the middle of themselves and outside the vicinity of any prisoner have a sensible desire of security. Any electronic observation of that discussion would need to be as per the Federal statute.

5th Amendment:

The historical backdrop of the benefit against self-incrimination is connected with a revolution; in the very beginning an upheaval against a religion, and at last an insurgency against state. In its initial stages it was a piece of a conflict between Protestant Anglicans and Protestant Calvinists, between a Protestant Parliament and a Protestant Crown (Kemp, 1958). The benefit is a piece of our modern law today in light of the fact that England got to be Anglican in the sixteenth century and on the grounds that for the Calvinists that was not sufficiently protestant.

Sporadically, in the prosecution after the determination of a crisis circumstance, a litigant will challenge the suitability into proof of articulations made to arbitrators amid the crisis. Ordinarily, these difficulties claim some infringement of the standard of Miranda v. Arizona, where the Supreme Court held that announcements made by a litigant while subject to custodial session must be gone before by the now-familiar warnings and a substantial waiver (Legal Issues in Crisis Management). For three reasons, though, a test to the tolerability of such statements taking into account Miranda is going to be unsuccessful.

To start with, Miranda is only applicable if the individual is in custody. Custody, for Miranda purposes, happens when the suspect will be taken into custody for further judgment or has been controlled in the same fashion of design ordinarily connected with formal capture. In crisis circumstances, where the suspect is not within the complete control of the police, there is no authority, and hence, the Miranda tenet is inapplicable (Legal Issues in Crisis Management). One court noticed that this guideline was the main workable methodology for police.

At the point when faced with an armed, blockaded suspect who is perhaps holding prisoners, their consideration would be redirected from what ought to be their main role -that of utilizing the methods well on the way to persuade the suspect to surrender calmly without hurting any other individual in the area. They would be compelled to think about how possible it is that the suspect may state something that the administration inevitably would need to present at trial, and afterward they would need to survey whether he would be prone to respond viciously to the hostile sounding Miranda notices. Second, Miranda notices are obliged just if the custodial suspect is subjected to interrogation. Negotiating the safe return of hostages and the peaceful resolution of a hostage situation is not considered interrogation (Legal Issues in Crisis Management). It is hence that the court declined to suppress incriminating statements made by a litigant…

Sources Used in Documents:


18 U.S. Code § 2511 - Interception and disclosure of wire, oral, or electronic communications prohibited. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from

Blume, J. (1984). Deadly Force in Memphis: Tennessee v. Garner. Cumberland Law Review, 5(1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from

Chhablani, S. (2009). Disentangling the Sixth Amendment. Journal of Constitutional Law,11(3). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from

CITY OF CANTON, OHIO V. HARRIS. (2010, October 7). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from
CITY OF WINTER HAVEN v. ALLEN. (1989, March 17). Retrieved April 20, 2015, from
GRAHAM v. CONNOR, 490 U.S. 386. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from
Grubb, A. (2010). Negotiation: The evolution of an art form within the policing arena. Aggression and Violent Behavior,15, 341-348. Retrieved April 23, 2015, from
Hudson v. McMillian. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
Kemp, J. (1958). The Background of the Fifth Amendment in English Law: A Stud y of Its Historical Implications. William and Mary Law Review,1(2). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from;
Legal issues in crisis management. (1994, January 1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from issues in crisis management.-a015704717
Miller, L. (2005). Hostage Negotiation: Psychological Principles and Practices. IJEMH • Vol. 7, No. 4 • 2005 277 International Journal of Emergency Mental Health,7(4), 277-293. Retrieved April 21, 2015, from
O'BRIEN v. CITY OF GRAND RAPIDS. (1994, January 1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
O'NEAL v. DeKALB COUNTY, GA. (1988, January 1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
PEOPLE v. GANTZ. (1984, January 1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
Smith, B. (2008). He Fourth Amendment, 1789 -- 1868: A Strange History. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, 5, 663-678. Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
STATE v. SANDS. (1997, January 1). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from
TAYLOR v. WATERS. (1996, April 10). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from
UNITED STATES v. AL-AZZAWY. (1985, January 1). Retrieved April 22, 2015, from
UNITED STATES v. DOWNS. (2000, October 12). Retrieved April 21, 2015, from

Cite this Document:

"Hostage Negotiations And The 4th 5th And 6th Amendments" (2015, April 30) Retrieved January 28, 2022, from

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