You have the right to remain silent.

Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.

You have a right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you.

If you choose to talk to a police officer, you have the right to stop the interview at any time.”

The wording of the Miranda right may vary from state to state, and it can be administered in a lot of different ways, but it is intended to let you know what your most basic rights are.  The Miranda warning was intended to protect your fifth amendment rights against self incrimination.

If you talk to the police willingly and are not under arrest, then everything you say can be used in court against you!  The Miranda warning is said when you are under arrest and no longer free to leave, but if you are just being detained, the police do not have to warn you, and everything you say is still admissible against you.  The warning is only valid after you are under arrest because before that, speaking is voluntary.  The term is Custodial Questioning.  It means that the Miranda must be said before the police question you when you are in custody.  When you are not in custody, the the term is Voluntary Compliance.

Imagine that the officer pulls beside you and says, "Hey, where you coming from?"  And you say, "Oh, just from back there."  Now, you may not know it, but the store three blacks back was robbed, and you just implicated yourself in a voluntary encounter with police.

Imagine that police officer stops you and starts demanding answers.  He accuses you of robbing a store, he tells you that he will arrest you if you don't answer his questions, he pulls out his cuffs and demands answers.  You, scared to death, answer his questions.  This is a VOLUNTARY ENCOUNTER.  You are free to turn and walk away at any time.  You are not in custody, and you are not being detained, you are free to go, free to not say a word, and free to ignore the officer.  He does not have to read you your rights, because the encounter is voluntary.  You are free to go.  I hate to harp on that, but the truth is, the police can be brutal and you will be so scared that you will be shaking, but the encounter is voluntary and you are free to terminate your side of it at any time.  He may continue to berate you, accuse you, even threaten you, but you can say nothing.  You have the right to remain silent even if you are not in custody.

An addendum is that you still have to identify yourself if an officer asks, if the local laws demand it.  If you dislike that, then change the law.


Know your rights!

Every state is different, and every city is different.  Know the laws of your city (most are listed on Municode), and of your state concerning rights in any activity that has a question of legality.  All states laws are on the internet, and they are mostly easy to understand.  California is different, some laws are enshrined in their Constitution, so be careful.

Some good Firearms resources are, and The High Road.

So please, be careful out there.


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