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What Rights Does a Person Have After Being Arrested?


A person has certain rights when he or she is arrested. After being arrested, the law enforcement officer must tell you the following before asking any questions:

  • You have the right to remain silent.
  • Anything you say may be used against you.
  • You have a right to have a lawyer present while you are questioned.
  • If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be appointed for you.

These are commonly known as your Miranda rights, which are guaranteed by the United States Constitution. If you are not given these warnings, your attorney can make a motion to suppress any statements you made to the police from being used in court. This does not necessarily mean that your case will be dismissed. Also, this does not apply if you spontaneously volunteer information to police without being questioned.

After your Miranda warnings have been given, you can only be questioned by police, without a lawyer present, only after you voluntarily give up your rights and only after you understand what you are giving up. Most often, people who speak English as a second language and are not native speakers, are only given their Miranda warnings in English. If that is the case, you cannot be deemed to have given up your rights if you did not fully understand the police.

Even if you voluntarily waive your rights in the beginning, if you change your mind later, the questioning must stop as soon as you say so or as soon as you say that you want a lawyer. If the police continue to interrogate you after you request a lawyer and you continue to talk, your answers can be used against you if you testify to something different in Court.

Nevertheless, even if you decline the invitation to be interrogated by police, you may be required to give certain physical evidence such as blood, breath, urine such as in an Orange County DUI investigation.

Once you have been arrested, you have a right to make and complete three free local telephone calls. Any additional calls made from jail must be collect calls.

For any questions about these rights or if you believe your rights have been violated, contact Orange County Criminal Defense Lawyer Scott D. Hughes at 714-423-6928 or

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