Miranda v. Arizona
This Case In History
You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say may be used for or against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney now or at any time during questioning. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to represent you, without cost, by the courts. [sample Miranda warning]
Law enforcement officers in movies, TV shows, and real life all utter some version of the Miranda warnings prior to interrogating a criminal suspect. In Miranda versus Arizona, the Supreme Court attempted to clarify a criminal suspect's privilege against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment, and right to counsel under the Sixth Amendment, during interrogation. Miranda, which was actually a review of four similar cases at once, was the Court's attempt to balance the rights of a person accused of a crime with the rights of society to prosecute those who commit criminal acts. Since it was handed down in 1966, the Miranda case has been the subject of continuing analysis and debate, yet its requirements, for the most part, have withstood the test of time.