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Do I have to wait for a police officer to read me my Miranda rights or can I assert them myself?

Fingerprint Card and Handcuffs After Being Arrested TV shows, movies, and books have taught us to wait for the dramatic moment when a police officer issues a suspect his Miranda warnings. It’s how we, the viewers and readers, know that an arrest has been made, the suspect has been taken into custody, and that the suspect has certain legal rights.

Your life, however, is not a TV show, movie, or book. For you, the consequences of a potential DUI conviction are real and potentially significant. Therefore, it is important to start protecting your rights immediately.

Start by Asserting Your Miranda Rights

You do not have to wait for a police officer to read you your rights. Instead, you may assert them yourself. When the police officer asks you a question, you have the right to say something like:

  • I wish to remain silent.

  • I would like to speak to my attorney before answering your question.

You may also let the officer know that you are aware of your rights and, therefore, you will not be answering any questions at this time.

Whichever approach you choose, it is important to be polite. Do not become verbally aggressive with the police officer. Instead, respond respectfully and calmly while protecting your rights.

Call a Virginia Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer As Soon As Possible

Anything that you say to a police officer before you assert your constitutional rights may be used against you later. However, once your Miranda rights have been asserted, then anything that you say in response to a police question may be inadmissible.

Admissibility of evidence is just one important piece of a DUI defense. For more information about how to defend yourself after a drunk driving arrest, please contact an experienced Virginia drunk driving lawyer as soon as possible. Time is of the essence and it is important to get started with your defense as soon as possible. Attorney T. Kevin Wilson has extensive experience and education in this area of the law. Please contact him today for a free, no-obligation to learn more about your rights.

 

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