Police Interrogations in Las Vegas
Much has been made recently of whether law enforcement is required to tell you the truth when they are interrogating you. The short answer is, there is no such requirement. If you are being questioned by law enforcement, you should assume that they are not telling you the truth. If you are a person of interest, or a suspect in a case like a violent crime, law enforcement will use any technique short of physical torture to gain probable cause or to extract a confession.
We’ve talked previously about being arrested in Las Vegas, here and here. Those articles covered mostly the laws you could potentially break when partying in our city. This post continues and expands on that subject by discussing potential issues in dealing with law enforcement either before or after an arrest.
Your Rights When Talking to Law Enforcement
Unlike what you see on television, you may or may not be read “your rights,” otherwise known as a Miranda warning. You can be arrested without being Mirandized, and you can discuss a case with the police voluntarily without being Mirandized.
Two requirements under the law trigger the Miranda warning:
1) You are in custody and
2) Police wish to interrogate you.
If you voluntarily discuss a case with law enforcement and are later arrested for a crime, you will most likely not be read the Miranda warning, unless an additional interrogation is wanted.
The Miranda warning really doesn’t grant you any additional rights. What Miranda does is require police to remind you of your rights, under the circumstances stated above. These rights are guaranteed to you under the U.S. Constitution in Amendment V and VI, which guarantees “No person…shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law…”, and “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right…to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.”
Miranda elaborates on these rights, by telling you that anything you say can and will be used against you in a court, and that you have to right to remain silent, and to consult with an attorney prior to and while talking to police. It is important to know that even if you have answered some police questions, you may invoke Miranda at any time during the conversation by informing the interrogator that you are invoking your rights to remain silent and won’t answer further questions without an attorney present.
Under Nevada law and precedent, you are only required to tell police your name when being forcibly detained or questioned. You cannot be arrested for refusing to answer questions.
If Police Wish to Question Me, What Should I Do?
If you are being held by police and questioned regarding a crime, it is important that you as a potential suspect clarify the situation by asking if you are being detained. If you are not being detained or arrested, you are free to leave; you are not required to answer any questions without the presence of an attorney. If you are being detained, inform the police that you are invoking your right to remain silent until an attorney is present to consult with you.
The Defenders can represent you in any criminal matter
In order to exercise your rights if police are questioning you, The Defenders can represent you. There are many accounts of police questioning and extracting confessions from suspects that led to convictions that were later overturned as new evidence became available. Don’t subject yourself to police questioning without the representation of a qualified attorney who can be present and protect your rights. Call us today at (702) 333-3333.
Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada, 542 US 177 (2004).
Las Vegas Drug Crimes Criminal Defense Attorney – The Defenders
It is important you contact The Defenders immediately so we can start creating an aggressive defense for your case. The Defenders delivers an honest and straightforward response to your charges while providing you personable and communicative involvement throughout the duration of your case. We’re aggressive when we need to be, compassionate when it counts, and always dedicated to your success. That’s what makes us The Defenders, a proud branch of the Richard Harris Law Firm.
We have the experience and knowledge you need to make sure you get the best judgment for your case. We are available day and night to start the process. Simply fill out our Contact Us form or call us at 702.333.3333.You don’t have to go through this alone, call us today!
The firm is led by attorney K. Ryan Helmick of The Defenders, who is experienced in dozens of criminal law matters. He and his team have helped thousands of people with their cases. It is his passion. Read more about Ryan here.