Dzhokar Tsarnaev and his Miranda rights

I am not well versed in legal matters, much less US ones.  So, I found it baffling that it is permissible for US authorities to interrogate Dzhokar Tsarnaev without having first ‘Mirandized’ him.

A nephew of mine who was up last weekend from the US for the funeral of our aunt tried to explain to me both the legality and the logistics behind it.  Because of the family obligations the past weekend, I could not really track this down right away, but my nephew did point me in the right direction.  (Thanks, PJ!)

It seems that it boils down to this:  a person can be arrested and interrogated without having been ‘Mirandized’ and it is perfectly legal – it’s just that what the person says cannot be used against him/her in the court of law.  Here is an excellent legal analysis of this very topic.   (Via Popehat)

‘… But recall that under (1), the government is still free to question Tsarnaev outside Miranda as long as the government accepts the uncertainty of whether those statements would be admissible in a criminal case against him. Assuming that the evidence against Tsarnaev’s many different crimes over the last week is likely to be overwhelming, agents may not need any statements from him for a criminal case…’



One Response to “Dzhokar Tsarnaev and his Miranda rights”

  1. Juggernaut Says:

    This is a dillemma for me. Neocons see civil liberties as too dispensible and libertarians can be naive on policy.

    While I’m a fan of due process, if he knows something (on the chance he is part of an organization, when he was captured), why risk another attack?

    Xanthippa says:

    Because those who sacrifice liberty for security end up getting neither…

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