It’s bad enough for anyone to be arrested for the mildest of offenses; it’s even worse if he or she is wrongfully arrested in the first place. Chris Matyszczyk, a creative director and a contributor to CNET, recounts the case of Keira Wilmot, a student at Bartow High School in Florida, who was arrested last year for “felony possession and discharge of a dangerous weapon.”
The “weapon” in question was a science project gone wrong that did not result to any injury or property damage. Despite the obviously harmless incident, Wilmot was arrested, without her rights being read, no less. She graduated earlier this year with a felony arrest record that can’t be expunged until after five years.
It’s hard to say if Wilmot’s situation would have been handled differently if she lived in Texas. However, the story is a clear demonstration of why Arlington bail bonds companies, like Just Bail Bonds, always remind those who get arrested to be aware of their Miranda rights.
The Miranda rights or Miranda warnings are the result of the famous Miranda v. Arizona case of 1966. In their landmark decision, the Supreme Court ruled that anyone in the custody of the police should first be reminded of his rights, such as the right to remain silent, the right to a lawyer, and so on, before he is interrogated. The reading of the Miranda rights, however, is not necessary for other police interrogation activities outside of an arrest, such as when they are asking for witness testimonies.
If an accused who was not read his rights reveals anything incriminating during a custodial interrogation, his statement cannot be used against him in court. If the statement is the only evidence the police has to justify the arrest, the accused can assert the Miranda defense, which can lead to the dropping of charges.
Dallas County locals who get arrested for a crime or misdemeanor, and who do not receive a reading of their Miranda rights should immediately seek bail and consult with an attorney to properly work out their defense. If funding for their bail is a problem, they can rely on experts in Arlington, TX bail bonds, who can not only guarantee their bail to the court but can also help in their release.
It is the job of the police to gather sufficient evidence to make an arrest stick while following the law, including the reading of the accused’s Miranda rights. If they fail to do this, the accused can invoke the Miranda defense and leave the courtroom a free person.
(Source: When your high school gets you arrested for a science project, CNET, May 31, 2014)