Right to Remain Silent


The right to silence is not a blanket protection to all future lines of questioning. There are certain situations in which an individual invokes his right to silence, and later waives his rights. In these situations, questioning following the waiver of the suspect's right to silence will typically generate admissible statements that do not violate the Fifth Amendment.

In Michigan v. Mosley, 423 U.S. 96 (1975), a suspect was read his Miranda warnings, and invoked his right to silence to terminate the interrogation. The police officers respected the suspect's initiation of the Firth Amendment, and ceased the interrogation. Two hours later, however, another officer read the suspect his Miranda rights again and the suspect confessed to the crime. The United States Supreme Court determined that because the police officers "scrupulously honored" the suspect's initial request to terminate the interrogation, and because the suspect did not invoke his Miranda rights during the second interrogation, the second interrogation was not protected by the suspect's initial right to silence.

As mentioned briefly in the Introduction, Miranda rights are also non-offense specific . . .


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Page last updated: 2/17/2007
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