3 of The Most Frequently Violated Rights of the Accused

In Washington, the police are supposed to follow the law, just like everyone else. One of the crucial obligations of law enforcement is not to violate anyone’s legal rights. Unfortunately, the rights guaranteed by the US Constitution, Bill of Rights, and the constitution of the state of Washington are not always honored when a person gets accused of a crime.

A Washington criminal defense attorney will fight relentlessly to protect your legal rights and hold law enforcement and the criminal justice system accountable when they trample on your constitutional protections. Here are 3 of the most frequently violated rights of the accused: 

Miranda Violations

When you are in police custody and the police ask you questions beyond merely your name and a few other non-incriminating details, they are engaging in “custodial interrogation.” Before starting a custodial interrogation, the officer is supposed to read you your Miranda rights. In reality, they do not actually read you your rights, because they have the script memorized from repeating it so many times on the job.

The police are supposed to inform you that you have the right to remain silent, that anything you say can and will be used against you in court, and that you have a right to have an attorney present. Informing you of your Miranda rights should happen before they ask you any substantive questions. It is pointless for them to tell you, after you have answered all of their questions, that you didn’t have to answer any of them because of the right to remain silent.

What we can do if this right got violated:

If the police engaged in unlawful custodial interrogation, we can ask the judge to throw out anything that you said after getting arrested. In other words, we will ask the judge to rule that the prosecutor cannot use any of the illegally obtained statements against you.

Illegal Search and Seizure

In many cases, the police are supposed to have a valid search warrant supported by probable cause before they are allowed to search your home or property. There are exceptions to this rule, which is why you want to work with a lawyer if you plan to raise the fourth amendment protection from unreasonable searches and seizures as a defense in your case.

What we can do if this right got violated:

If the police performed an unlawful search and seizure of evidence, we can file a motion with the judge asking the judge to exclude all items the police obtained improperly. This would mean that the prosecutor would not get to use those pieces of evidence against you in court.

Violations of Due Process

Due process violations can take many forms, including the accused having the right to confront witnesses and getting adequate time to work with their lawyer. Many cases involve violations of due process.

What we can do if this right got violated:

The appropriate remedy depends upon the type of due process violation. We can address these issues directly with the judge. 

A Washington criminal defense attorney can help protect you from violations of your rights and seek appropriate remedies if the police or prosecutor violated your rights. Contact our office today for help with your case.

DISCLAIMER: This post is intended to share my perspective, insights, and some general information on various aspects of criminal cases. It is not legal advice and is not intended to substitute for legal advice. You should consult an attorney to obtain legal advice for your individual situation and case.