Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

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lundsta's picture
lundsta
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Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

I came across this article today. Just thought I would post it here and see what everyone's thoughts were.

 

This was a court ruling published and updated May 26th 2009. I found this through our local news here in Portland, Oregon.

 

http://www.katu.com/news/national/46088117.html

Gungnir's picture
Gungnir
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

It doesn't specifically change anything.

They can ask me all the questions they like until my lawyer gets there, and I'll give them nothing. NEVER ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS THAT THE POLICE ASK WITHOUT A LAWYER PRESENT.

The ruling actually doesn't impact your rights at all, there's nothing in the Constitution, or Bill of Rights that stops the police questioning you with or without your lawyer present, even when you get a traffic ticket the Cop will be recording what you said. You need to exercise your right to not incriminate yourself, and say nothing, other than I may be prepared to answer any questions that you may have when my legal representation present.

Or alternatively if they are not charging you, you can ask for the DA to sign you a writ of immunity from prosecution for anything that you say. This goes...

"Am I being charged with anything? If not then I'm prepared to answer any questions you may have once the District Attorney's office have issued me Immunity from Prosecution for any information that I may provide. Or my lawyer is present"

That normally gets you your lawyer pretty darn fast.

Ken C's picture
Ken C
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

I am coming to the belief that you should never provide any information to the police whether you have a lawyer or not.

Maybe I am becoming too cynical.

 

Ken

 

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jrf29
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

The supreme court did not rule that suspects may be interrogated without an attorney, if they have requested one.  That ruling was made in 1966, and hasn't been touched.

Instead, the court has reversed a 1986 ruling which says that once a suspect has requested an attorney, or had an attorney appointed, then the police may never again initiate any contact without the lawyer present.  It revolved around the case of a suspected drug dealer: 

"He initially waived his right to a lawyer and was questioned by the police. He told several conflicting stories. Several days later, he appeared in court for a preliminary hearing and a local judge appointed a lawyer to represent Montejo, who could not afford an attorney.

Later that day, police investigators approached Montejo in prison and he again waived his right to a lawyer.

But Montejo later claimed the police had violated his constitutional right to counsel by interrogating him without his lawyer being present. (Reuters)."

There is an explicit constitutional right not to answer questions.  In addition, the supreme court has ruled that once a suspect has requested an attorney, questioning must cease until the attorney is present.  The only question that this ruling addresses is whether the police can approach a defendent and request to speak to him/her without the presence of the attorney, if one has been appointed.

jrf29's picture
jrf29
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

kenc,

Here is a video of an excellent law lecture on speaking to criminal investigators that was made for you:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=8167533318153586646&hl=en

rhare's picture
rhare
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer

Here are some videos that I think everyone should see related to this issue:

This is the same link that was provided by jrf29, but on you tube instead.  It's titled "Don't talk to police by Law Professor James Duane and Officer George Bruch".

www.youtube.com/watch

This is another excellent video that I think everyone should see as well "Citizens Guide to Surving a Police Encounter:"

video.google.com/videoplay

Know your rights!  For some other amusement you can also see this video, there are several of these out on the web:

www.youtube.com/watch

www.youtube.com/watch

And many others like this can be found from links at:

www.checkpointusa.org/

Morpheus's picture
Morpheus
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Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer
Gungnir wrote:

It doesn't specifically change anything.

They can ask me all the questions they like until my lawyer gets there, and I'll give them nothing. NEVER ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS THAT THE POLICE ASK WITHOUT A LAWYER PRESENT.

The ruling actually doesn't impact your rights at all, there's nothing in the Constitution, or Bill of Rights that stops the police questioning you with or without your lawyer present, even when you get a traffic ticket the Cop will be recording what you said. You need to exercise your right to not incriminate yourself, and say nothing, other than I may be prepared to answer any questions that you may have when my legal representation present.

Or alternatively if they are not charging you, you can ask for the DA to sign you a writ of immunity from prosecution for anything that you say. This goes...

"Am I being charged with anything? If not then I'm prepared to answer any questions you may have once the District Attorney's office have issued me Immunity from Prosecution for any information that I may provide. Or my lawyer is present"

That normally gets you your lawyer pretty darn fast.

Does it not bother you at all that the state's attitude is to find any and all ways around the technicalities of the constitution Gungnir? 

I am afraid that your points defuse nothing. Why? Because we keep seeing a clear, long-term effort to erode and destroy the entire constitution with illegal and unconstitutional precedent as well as nefarious and underhanded techniques to get to loopholes that can be exploited. For example, if a policeman asks "Mind if I search your car? You have nothing to hide, do you?".

It's a TRICK question (saw it on an LE messageboard) designed to fool or trick the "suspect" into waiving their 4th amendment protections. What the hell kind of government or public servant does that? 

One that you can't trust, that's who.

I think that it should be MANDATORY for police to inform suspects of ALL of their rights. That's honoring the spirit of the Bill of Rights. Not telling them in hopes that they are ignorant of their rights, and then letting them waive them via such ignorance is a clear indicator of motive to circumvent the constitution. The sign of a tyrant.

Law and order are secondary to constitutional liberties. The later must be guarded against the former.

Gungnir's picture
Gungnir
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Posts: 643
Re: Court: Suspects can be interrogated without lawyer
Pete In Florida wrote:

Does it not bother you at all that the state's attitude is to find any and all ways around the technicalities of the constitution Gungnir?

Pete, I think you know me well enough to know that if that's what this did I'd be sending mails immediately to my Senators, Congressmen, and likely the POTUS (for all the good that would do me). In fact it eliminates a "protection" that is not Constitutionally protected, that being that the police cannot begin to question you after arrest until your legal representation is present if you've requested representation. Which actually is not a protection at all, anything you say to the police regardless of whether you're arrested, or not, under charge, or not, can and will be used against you in a court of law. However should you wish to use something that you said to the police in your defense then that can be objected to as hearsay, Just request a lawyer, and shut the hell up, and you've got the same effect.

So this ruling does not impact in any way the 5th and 6th amendments, nor does it erode anything, it stems from an attempt to protect people who do not understand their basic rights as US Citizens, and do not understand the rights of the Miranda as read to them on arrest (which is strange, because the Miranda ends with "do you understand these rights").

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