Miranda v. Arizona (1966)

Definition - What does Miranda v. Arizona (1966) mean?

Miranda v. Arizona is a landmark U.S. Supreme Court case decided in 1966, which determined that arrested suspects in criminal cases must be informed that they have the right to:

  • remain silent,
  • have a lawyer present when they are questioned, and
  • have a court-appointed attorney if they can't afford to hire a legal advocate;

and that

  • anything they say can be used as evidence against them.

Justipedia explains Miranda v. Arizona (1966)

The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Miranda v. Arizona was important because it preserved the Fifth Amendment rights of suspects arrested in criminal cases.

Specifically, the Court ruled that: "the prosecution may not use statements, whether exculpatory or inculpatory, stemming from custodial interrogation of the defendant unless it demonstrates the use of procedural safeguards effective to secure the privilege against self-incrimination."

The Court also defined custodial interrogation as police questioning of a suspect who has been taken into custody or is otherwise detained and is no longer free to leave.

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