Maryland DUI and Miranda Rights

Do you really understand how Miranda warnings work in regards to driving under the influence (DUI) cases in the state of Maryland? If you are stopped and suspected of driving under the influence, it is important you consult with a Maryland DUI lawyer to better to understand how these rights can impact your case.

Explanation of Miranda Rights

Almost everyone has heard the term Miranda rights and is familiar with the general refrain which explains the particular rights you are entitled to when arrested. After you are placed under arrest for DUI, the arresting officer has to read you these rights if they plan to use any statement that you make after the arrest against you.

If you have been charged with DUI and request a Miranda hearing to challenge or suppress evidence stemming from that arrest, the prosecutor must show your Miranda rights were read to you at the proper time and in a manner that you completely understood. The prosecution must also show that you waived your rights prior to answering questions and making statements. For the state to demonstrate that you did in fact understand your Miranda rights and waived them, the state must show that you did so:

  • Intelligently
  • Voluntarily
  • And knowingly

Prior to your arrest, the police officer has to determine probable cause to place you under arrest, and as such no Miranda warnings are needed at this time. This is important to remember when they are asking you leading questions. You should politely, but firmly refuse all questions and requests to search your car or property until you can speak with an attorney.

Prosecutors have begun training DUI arresting officers to try and obtain as much incriminating information as possible during the investigation phase, prior to the actual arrest. An example of this would be if you are stopped and then asked if you had been drinking. Whatever answer you provide will be admissible during court proceedings, even though you were not yet under arrest.

Miranda Rights and Probable Cause in MD

During the DUI motions hearing, multiple issues can be combined and if you have hired a qualified DUI defense attorney, they will use one issue in order to gain advantage for another. An example of this would be if you have a case where probable cause and reasonable suspicion are issues in addition to you Miranda rights. An aggressive DUI attorney will require the officer to justify how he formed the reasonable belief that you were, in fact, driving under the influence and will scrutinize every aspect of your traffic stop and arrest for any violations of your rights.

Bringing a Miranda Motion

The answer to this question depends upon the particular facts of your situation. If you made any type of statement that is extremely damaging to your case, and you were unclear of whether you were properly advised of your rights, then it likely makes sense to have that information blocked or suppressed from your hearing or trial. A skilled Maryland DUI attorney is best-suited to help you determine if this is a viable option, and he will know how to pursue this kind of legal challenge.