Should terrorist suspects be Mirandized?

Beyond Saving
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Should terrorist suspects be Mirandized?

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/21/us/a-debate-over-delaying-suspects-miranda-rights.html?_r=0 

The FBI has decided not to Mirandize Dzhokhar citing the "public safety" exception. For those who don't know, it is generally required for American police to inform people of their rights before interrogating them (right to remain silent, right to an attorney, right to stop answering questions at anytime) followed by asking if the suspect is willing to answer questions without an attorney present. If the suspect then asks to see an attorney, the police are not allowed to ask any questions and anything said is not admissible in court.

The Miranda warning originated from the case Miranda v. Arizona in which Ernesto Miranda was arrested under suspicion of the kidnapping and rape of a 17 year old girl. He was interrogated for a couple of hours without his lawyer at the end of which he signed a confession. He was found guilty and the case eventually made it to the Supreme Court. The Court ruled that the confession was not admissible because police interrogation practices were coercive and the suspect did not have the opportunity to speak to a lawyer before confessing. The 5th Amendment says a person cannot "be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself" and the 6th guarantees a person shall "have Assistance of Counsel for his defense". The Miranda warning is designed to assure that these rights are protected. 

Justice Warren wrote:

The person in custody must, prior to interrogation, be clearly informed that he has the right to remain silent, and that anything he says will be used against him in court; he must be clearly informed that he has the right to consult with a lawyer and to have the lawyer with him during interrogation, and that, if he is indigent, a lawyer will be appointed to represent him.

...

Justice Warren wrote:

If the individual indicates in any manner, at any time prior to or during questioning, that he wishes to remain silent, the interrogation must cease ... If the individual states that he wants an attorney, the interrogation must cease until an attorney is present. At that time, the individual must have an opportunity to confer with the attorney and to have him present during any subsequent questioning.

And thus was born the Miranda rights. 

As a side note, the Court ordered another trial for Miranda where the confession was suppressed and he was convicted again and sentenced to 20-30 years. After 6 years, he was released on probation. He was killed in 1976 after being stabbed with a knife in a bar fight.  

It is not really constitutionally required that police read the Miranda warning verbatim, but doing so assures that the interrogation will not be viewed as coercive by the courts and any admission of guilt can be used at trial. Without the warning, a good defense attorney can try and is usually successful at getting a judge to suppress testimony.

One major exception is what is called the "public safety exception". This exception finds its roots in the case New York v. Quarles. A police officer was on patrol when he spotted a man matching the description of a suspected rapist. The man ran and the officer chased him into a supermarket, eventually apprehending him. The officer patted down the suspect and discovered an empty holster, at which point the officer asked where the gun was. Quarles told the officer where the gun was hidden and after recovering the weapon the officer Mirandized and arrested Quarles. 

Quarles' attorney attempted to suppress the gun as evidence because when the officer asked the question he had not been Mirandized. The lower courts agreed and it was appealed to the Supreme Court. The Court then ruled that there was a public safety exception because upon noticing that a gun was missing, the police officer's questions were more in the interest of protecting the public from an immediate threat than building a case against the person in custody. 

Justice Rehnquist wrote:

Although respondent was in police custody when he made his statements and the facts come within the ambit of Miranda, nevertheless, on these facts, there is a "public safety" exception to the requirement that Miranda warnings be given before a suspect's answers may be admitted

Page 467 U. S. 650

into evidence, and the availability of that exception does not depend upon the motivation of the individual officers involved. The doctrinal underpinnings of Miranda do not require that it be applied in all its rigor to a situation in which police officers ask questions reasonably prompted by a concern for the public safety. In this case, so long as the gun was concealed somewhere in the supermarket, it posed more than one danger to the public safety: an accomplice might make use of it, or a customer or employee might later come upon it. Pp. 467 U. S. 655-657.

(b) Procedural safeguards that deter a suspect from responding, and increase the possibility of fewer convictions, were deemed acceptable in Miranda in order to protect the Fifth Amendment privilege against compulsory self-incrimination. However, if Miranda warnings had deterred responses to Officer Kraft's question about the whereabouts of the gun, the cost would have been something more than merely the failure to obtain evidence useful in convicting respondent. An answer was needed to insure that future danger to the public did not result from the concealment of the gun in a public area. P. 467 U. S. 657.

(c) The narrow exception to the Miranda rule recognized here will to some degree lessen the desirable clarity of that rule. However, the exception will not be difficult for police officers to apply, because, in each case, it will be circumscribed by the exigency which justifies it. Police officers can and will distinguish almost instinctively between questions necessary to secure their own safety or the safety of the public and questions designed solely to elicit testimonial evidence from a suspect. 

The Bush administration, and now the Obama administration has been pushing to extend the public safety exception to include all terrorist cases. The purpose of the Miranda ruling was to protect the rights of the accused from what used to be extremely aggressive interrogation techniques.

We know that aggressive interrogation techniques can and do lead to false confessions. The Innocence Project is an organization that attempts to get DNA testing for death row inmates who were convicted before DNA testing existed. Of people who have been exonerated, 25% of them confessed. 

http://www.innocenceproject.org/understand/False-Confessions.php

The purpose of the public safety exception is to give police officers latitude to deal with immediate safety issues that often surround a violent arrest. The most common use of the exception is to locate weapons or the location of accomplices.

Do you think that questioning Dzhokhar falls under this exception?

If they are asking about the location of bombs/weapons etc. it clearly applies, but anything beyond that- it does not imo. Dzhokhar might be a scumbag who deserves a bullet between the eyes, but even scumbags have the right to an attorney. 

I'm not sure how strong the case is for the bombing itself, but at the very least even if the FBI fucks up the interrogation there is plenty of evidence for resisting arrest and firing at police officers which should give him a very long sentence. I think the main reason the FBI is refusing to Mirandize is that they want to set court precedent so in the future they don't have to Mirandize anyone they accuse of terrorism. That is a dangerous precedent. The FBI probably sees it as a win-win because even if they lose in a Miranda case the other charges are enough for life in prison. I don't think any of us wins when the government takes away our rights.

It is bad enough that the government can exercise great powers without a warrant as soon as they mention the word terrorism. How many of our rights are we going to give away in the name of the War on Terror?  

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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It is very rare that I agree

It is very rare that I agree with you on much, but it does concern me that he had legal status and was not Mirandized. This is not to me a left vs right or class issue, this is a long term concern everyone should be concerned with. I really hope this trend gets reversed by some Supreme Court in the future.

 

I hope it doesn't end up taking someone truly innocent to knock some sense into our government.

 

The way it has been explained by news sources, is that the FBI has enough physical evidence that whatever they ask him without Miranda they wouldn't have to use in court anyway. They may also use this to get him to talk to avoid the death penalty.

But the long term affects of this precedence on any case still needs to have an eye kept on it.

 

Oh btw, the real reason this happened according to an MSNBC report is that the older brother had battery charges brought  by a girlfriend he dated, which made him lose  any chance of becoming a citizen and the pro kick boxing organization he wanted to enter would not allow him with those charges. So he lost his citizenship and a chance at a career. 

What I don't understand is how he was allowed to stay in the states after the battery charge.

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I hope the kid gets a good

I hope the kid gets a good lawyer and gets off scot free. That's the only way to turn this shit around.

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They should read the rights

They should read the rights to him but given the urgency to find out who he is connected to and if there are future plans to bomb other citizens then I say fuck his rights and slap the bitch around until he spills his guts.


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Vastet wrote:I hope the kid

Vastet wrote:
I hope the kid gets a good lawyer and gets off scot free. That's the only way to turn this shit around.

I think everyone here is making this too simplistic. Law enforcement is allowed to question you without Miranda if they are not going to use what they ask you in court. In this case they have enough physical evidence that they don't need to use any answers he gives against him, so his rights are not being violated.

 

Now that is not to say we should not be concerned with long term legal trends. It is just to say in this case, they have thousands of photos placing them at the bombing scene. They have the physical evidence of bomb materials at locations linked to them. They had bomb material and IEDs with them during the shootouts. And they murdered a cop too. So they don't have to use any answers he gives. The ballistics and photo and bomb material evidence will be enough by itself.

 

My worry is more long term than one case. Laws can be used as political weapons against dissent. That is the danger with any government set up. I'd worry more about no name cases that never make front page. I think there is so much media coverage on this that this guy if he survives is going to get the best defense that would make OJ's lawyers look like grade school politicians.

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Brian37 wrote:Vastet wrote:I

Brian37 wrote:

Vastet wrote:
I hope the kid gets a good lawyer and gets off scot free. That's the only way to turn this shit around.

I think everyone here is making this too simplistic. Law enforcement is allowed to question you without Miranda if they are not going to use what they ask you in court. In this case they have enough physical evidence that they don't need to use any answers he gives against him, so his rights are not being violated.

The big question is how far do you take the "miranda rights"? When to they stop and when do they start?

 


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digitalbeachbum

digitalbeachbum wrote:

Brian37 wrote:

Vastet wrote:
I hope the kid gets a good lawyer and gets off scot free. That's the only way to turn this shit around.

I think everyone here is making this too simplistic. Law enforcement is allowed to question you without Miranda if they are not going to use what they ask you in court. In this case they have enough physical evidence that they don't need to use any answers he gives against him, so his rights are not being violated.

The big question is how far do you take the "miranda rights"? When to they stop and when do they start?

 

I think this is a very fine line and again, I worry more about long term totality on society and not one particular case. I also have a tendency to say do it, and keep the sunlight of scrutiny on the system.

But again, the reports are in this case, that there is enough evidence without using his own words against him that there would be no forced self incrimination by the government.  I worry more about no name people who might get charged. I worry more about things like Gitmo than this. There is so much sunlight on this case if he survives he will not get railroaded.

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digitalbeachbum wrote:The

digitalbeachbum wrote:

The big question is how far do you take the "miranda rights"? When to they stop and when do they start?

I think the quotes from the Court that I posted above make it pretty clear. This isn't really an issue where lower courts have had a lot of trouble ruling consistently. The only question is whether the accusation of terrorism should somehow be treated different from accusations of murder, arson or organized crime. The Court has not addressed that question yet, although with 20 people arrested last year on terrorism charges filled with accusations of entrapment and loose interpretation of the safety exception, it is only a matter of time before one of those cases makes it that far. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving

Beyond Saving wrote:

digitalbeachbum wrote:

The big question is how far do you take the "miranda rights"? When to they stop and when do they start?

I think the quotes from the Court that I posted above make it pretty clear. This isn't really an issue where lower courts have had a lot of trouble ruling consistently. The only question is whether the accusation of terrorism should somehow be treated different from accusations of murder, arson or organized crime. The Court has not addressed that question yet, although with 20 people arrested last year on terrorism charges filled with accusations of entrapment and loose interpretation of the safety exception, it is only a matter of time before one of those cases makes it that far. 

This is where I agree with you long term. I think we are in some very grey area here and really have to watch ourselves.

 

But also, here is what I do not like. I think it is bullshit to call "terrorists" "terrorists". It sets them above common criminals and to me they are not. Just because you murder people and claim politics or religion as the reason, does not make you any less of a fucktard than some sicko who mows down people in a movie theater.

 

 

 

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I just realized that I said

I just realized that I said "go ahead and do it" in an earlier post. I need to clarify this. I meant read them their Miranda. But also, I think there is no harm in questioning as long as the ethic is that you refrain from using it against them if you have not Mirandized them. But it still is a grey area.

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One of the best songs of all time

And my favorite remake

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Vastet
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I sincerely hope that

I sincerely hope that everyone who wants to strip people's rights gets to experience the consequences first hand.

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 Lol, posted the songs in

 Lol, posted the songs in the wrong thread. That's what you get for opening too many tabs at once. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Vastet wrote:I sincerely

Vastet wrote:
I sincerely hope that everyone who wants to strip people's rights gets to experience the consequences first hand.

Yeah, unfortunately those who take away the rights are rarely the ones who suffer for it. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Sad but true.

Sad but true.

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Yeah, McCain wants him to be

Yeah, McCain wants him to be treated as an 'enemy combatent'. Odd considering McCain was a POW for 5 years

 


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Beyond Saving wrote:I think

Beyond Saving wrote:
I think the quotes from the Court that I posted above make it pretty clear. This isn't really an issue where lower courts have had a lot of trouble ruling consistently. The only question is whether the accusation of terrorism should somehow be treated different from accusations of murder, arson or organized crime. The Court has not addressed that question yet, although with 20 people arrested last year on terrorism charges filled with accusations of entrapment and loose interpretation of the safety exception, it is only a matter of time before one of those cases makes it that far. 

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Beyond Saving wrote:Yeah,

Beyond Saving wrote:

Yeah, unfortunately those who take away the rights are rarely the ones who suffer for it. 

Your more of a pacifist than me.


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digitalbeachbum wrote:Beyond

digitalbeachbum wrote:

Beyond Saving wrote:

Yeah, unfortunately those who take away the rights are rarely the ones who suffer for it. 

Your more of a pacifist than me.

You consider yourself a pacifist? 

I don't consider myself a pacifist. I do hold to the non-aggression principle which is the idea that initiating violence is wrong. The difference being that if someone breaks into my house, starts shooting at people in a crowded mall etc. I have no problem with drawing my own weapon and putting them down. Strictly speaking, a pacifist would find even that action wrong.

I believe that government has to use violence to enforce laws, but should always err on the side of non-violence. It is much worse for a government to force its will upon an innocent citizen than to fail to force it on a guilty one. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving

Beyond Saving wrote:

digitalbeachbum wrote:

Beyond Saving wrote:

Yeah, unfortunately those who take away the rights are rarely the ones who suffer for it. 

Your more of a pacifist than me.

You consider yourself a pacifist? 

I don't consider myself a pacifist. I do hold to the non-aggression principle which is the idea that initiating violence is wrong. The difference being that if someone breaks into my house, starts shooting at people in a crowded mall etc. I have no problem with drawing my own weapon and putting them down. Strictly speaking, a pacifist would find even that action wrong.

I believe that government has to use violence to enforce laws, but should always err on the side of non-violence. It is much worse for a government to force its will upon an innocent citizen than to fail to force it on a guilty one. 

I consider myself a 50/50 mix.

With this "marathon bomber" I do not believe he has any more rights. He sacrificed them when he committed the crime.

I believe that those people who commit crimes should lose privileges that law abiding citizens have.

I believe that they should do what they need to do in order to get information out of him, including tricking him.

I do not believe in torture to get info. It doesn't work.

 

 


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digitalbeachbum wrote:With

digitalbeachbum wrote:

With this "marathon bomber" I do not believe he has any more rights. He sacrificed them when he committed the crime.

He has not been found guilty yet. Should we just assume that everyone the government says is guilty is guilty without a trial?

 

digitalbeachbum wrote:

I believe that those people who commit crimes should lose privileges that law abiding citizens have.

Without a trial?

 

digitalbeachbum wrote:

I believe that they should do what they need to do in order to get information out of him, including tricking him.

I do not believe in torture to get info. It doesn't work.

Bullshit, torture works. That is why for years we extradited people to countries that would torture them for us. That is a statement completely fabricated by people who want to be anti-torture but are unwilling to accept the consequences that being anti-torture could mean important information is not recovered in time. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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digitalbeachbum wrote:With

digitalbeachbum wrote:

With this "marathon bomber" I do not believe he has any more rights. He sacrificed them when he committed the crime.

I believe that those people who commit crimes should lose privileges that law abiding citizens have.

I believe that they should do what they need to do in order to get information out of him, including tricking him.

I do not believe in torture to get info. It doesn't work.

This is crazy backwards logic. So you'd take away his rights before he's been tried? Guilty till proven innocent, because he's been found guilty by public opinion? Great system.

Who decides whether he has these rights or not before the trial? The whole point of trials is that everyone is supposed to be given an equal playing field. If you start removing rights before guilt has been determined, it defeats the purpose of the system.

Just because you're angry at the actions of the alleged perpetrator doesn't give you extra rights to remove theirs.

 

 

 


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If anything, he's proven he

If anything, he's proven he doesn't deserve rights. I'd like to see him locked up without charges or a trial. For however long it'd take to make him see his stupidity.
Right now he's more dangerous and evil than the bombers are.

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