A Closer Look at Miranda Rights in Context of DWI Arrest

policeIf the police did not read you your Miranda rights after arresting you for a DWI, it is important to reach out to a seasoned New Jersey DWI defense attorney as soon as possible. We will scrutinize the facts of your case and help determine whether a Miranda motion may be the right path in your case. You can rest assured that the legal team at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is committed to providing the aggressive and results-focused DWI you need. Time is of the essence, so please do not wait to reach out.

In the state of New Jersey, DWI stands for Driving while Intoxicated. The basic offense of a DWI consists of driving with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent of higher. For commercial drivers, the BAC level must not exceed 0.05 percent. For drivers under the age of 21, the BAC cannot be 0.01 percent or higher.

In New Jersey, a DWI is a traffic offense rather than a criminal offense. This means that police do not have to advise you of your Miranda rights during roadside interrogation, unless and until you have been arrested or taken into police custody. Put another way, Miranda rights only kick in when individuals are being questioned while in police custody. “Custody” in such cases is not limited to physical lock-ups at police headquarters. Instead, custody refers to any circumstances under which a reasonable innocent person would conclude he or she was not free to leave.

Once in police custody, the following Miranda rights must be read to the defendant: you have the right to remain silent; anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law; you have the right to an attorney; and if you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you.

It is important to note, however, that if you are questioned during a traffic stop but prior to an arrest, you are not entitled to Miranda rights and anything you say can be used against you.

Miranda rights are designed to inform the defendant of his or her Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination and Sixth Amendment right to be represented by a lawyer. If a police officer fails to read you your Miranda rights, your case will not just disappear due to this technicality. Rather, the statements you made while in police custody may be excluded as evidence against you. Put simply, the appropriate remedy for evidence obtained by the state in violation of the Miranda rule is the exclusion of such evidence at trial.

Being arrested for a DWI can be extremely stressful and you may be confused about how to proceed. If you are facing a DWI charge, it is imperative to reach out to a skilled and knowledgeable New Jersey DWI attorney who can help. With years of experience, we are dedicated to protecting your rights throughout the entire legal process. To discuss your case in more detail, please take advantage of the fact that we offer free initial consultations. You may contact us online or call us at 877-450.8301.

More Blog Posts:

The Burden of Proof in a New Jersey DWI Case

A Basic Overview of Possible DWI Defenses in New Jersey