How to Assert Your Right to Remain Silent

If you are arrested, you are entitled to certain rights that were given to you by the U.S. Supreme Court in Miranda v. Arizona. The police must “read you your rights”, or what is known as giving a Miranda warning, which gives you the following rights:

  • Right to remain silent;
  • Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law;
  • Right to consult with an attorney and have that attorney present during questioning by police;
  • Right to have an attorney appointed for you if you cannot afford one;
  • Right to stop a police interview at any time.

Many times, defendants find it difficult to assert their rights when being questioned by police. However, it is important that you do your best to retain your right to silence before you have the opportunity to speak with a criminal defense attorney.

If you remain silent, the police can continue to question you. But that does not mean you have to answer. After you are given your Miranda warning, you are entitled to stop the questioning by telling the police that you want to speak with an attorney.

If the police continue to question you after you have made it known that you want to talk with a lawyer, they have violated Miranda, and anything that you say to them – or any evidence they may find as a result of what you said – cannot be used against you at trial.

The Cogdell Law Firm is a boutique law firm focusing on large, complex business and criminal financial-related litigation, including white collar criminal defense, securities fraud, health care fraud investigation, criminal appeals and state criminal defense. When results matter most, contact Dan Cogdell at (713) 426-2244 or