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Why the Right to Have an Attorney Present is a Crucial Safeguard

Miranda Rights that clarify a prisoner's right to have an attorney present protects defendants, police officers, and court proceedings.

Posted 7 months ago by Detroit Bail Bonds

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It’s a well-known fact that someone who has been arrested has the right to have an attorney present before thoroughly speaking with police officers. On the surface, it makes a lot of sense, but some of the reasons for this protocol are not as apparent.

The Right to Have an Attorney Present: How It Protects Everyone Involved

Having a defense attorney on hand during questioning not only protects the prisoner, but also the patrol officers, detectives, and the entire case in general. Consider the following:

The right to have an attorney present during questioning is a crucial safeguard.1. It’s the prisoner’s word against his … and hers … and his … and theirs.

From officers to witnesses, too many people are involved in an arrest or otherwise see an arrest take place. If someone who is arrested says something and several people hear it, who is to say which version of the story is correct? That’s why it’s especially important for defendants to be careful what they say without an attorney present.

2. Words can get twisted.

Some people are really good at leaving out certain details, or reading too much into what you’re saying. It’s very possible that they have the defendant’s literal words correct, but will spin them in a different light.

It’s also possible that the people who heard the defendant’s words will not remember them or that they genuinely misunderstood them.

3. The prisoner might not be thinking clearly.

Oftentimes, prisoners might say something in the heat of the moment that they don’t really mean or that aren’t otherwise accurate. This can happen, for example, if the prisoner is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or has been recently involved in a domestic dispute or other confrontation. Defendants who realize they should save comments for when an attorney is there could be better off in the long run.

4. It keeps the entire case cleaner.

Many issues can muddy up an entire court case, possibly even leading to a mistrial. This is especially true if a defendant was coerced into making certain comments without taking advantage of the right to have an attorney present. A mistrial means taxpayers’ money wasted and time lost.

Miranda Rights

The right to an attorney is among two main protections that prisoners have within Miranda Rights. The other is the right to remain silent, which is related to a constitutional right not to incriminate yourself.

To learn more, read our blog about Miranda Rights or contact one of our bail bond agents.

For more information about why the right to have an attorney present is a crucial safeguard, consult with your attorney or contact one of our bail bond agents in Port Huron.

 

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