Ellicott City, Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney | Your Right to Remain Silent

Portner & Shure Law Firm Serving Maryland, Virginia & Washington D.C.


Many already know that the right to remain silent from the much-quotedMirandarights. It is important to remember that every person who is interrogated while in custody must be given theirMirandarights. An interrogation is when the police act or speak in a way they know will reasonably elicit an incriminating response, and being in custody means that the individual does not feel free to leave.

The right to remain silent originates from the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination, and later outlined in the caseMiranda v. Arizona. In order to invoke your right to remain silent, it is not enough to simple refuse to speak. This means that simply remaining silent may be used against you in the court of law. In order to prevent this, the interviewee must actually state that they are not speaking because they are invoking their right to remain silent.

For those who do not speak English or speak English as a second language, it is absolutely essential that they learn to say "I would like to use my right to remain silent" in English so that they can protect themselves from self-incrimination. This is more important for those who do not speak English or speak English as a second language because the speaker may not fully understand the words they are speaking and accidentally give information that can be used against them.