What Happens After The Defendant Asserts His Right To Counsel?

Asserting Your Right To Counsel

If after invoking his or her right to silence, the suspect initiates further conversation with the police, the resumption of police questioning will not constitute a failure to “scrupulously honor” the right to remain silent. State v. Fuller, 118 N.J.  at 83; State v. Mallon, 288 N.J. Super. at 147. If there is any uncertainty or ambiguity about whether or not a suspect has asserted the right to remain silent, the police must cease asking questions about the crime, State v. Dixon, 125 N.J.  223, 240-241 (1991), but may question the suspect to clarify if the suspect intends to asset his or her right to remain silent. State v. Harvey, 151 N.J. 117, 221 (1997); State v. Johnson, 120 N.J. at 283. See also State v. Harvey, 121 N.J. at 418-19. “Only if the suspect [then] makes clear that heis not invoking his Miranda  rights should substantive questioning be resumed.” State v. Wright, 97 N.J. 113, 120 n. 4 (1984) (quoting U.S. v. Rigg,  537 F.2d 1219 (4th Cir. 1976)); See also State v. Bohuk, 269 N.J. Super. at 593.

If you or a family member has remained silent in a police interview in New Jersey, it is crucial you speak with a qualified criminal attorney who is experienced in handling criminal matters. The attorneys at Aiello Harris have the experience and knowledge to protect your rights and defend you against criminal charges.  For a free initial consultation, call us today at (908) 561-5577 or contact us online.  Your initial consultation is free.

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