Amendment Rights, Essay Example

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Essay

The Fifth Amendment protects individuals from incriminating themselves by saying something that could be used against them in the allegations they are facing.  This has been the referred to as the right of silence.  This Amendment also guarantees several things to the individual such as the right to due process, to a grand jury trial, and double jeopardy, not to able to be tried twice for the same crime.  The Miranda Law is the statement made to individuals who are arrested to ensure their Fifth Amendment rights are understood.  This state’s “You have the right to remain silent.  Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.   You have the right to talk to a lawyer and have him present with you during questioning.  If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be appointed to represent you, if you wish.” (Miranda Law)

The Sixth Amendment guarantees the following rights, “The right to a speedy trial;

the right to a public trial;  the right to be judged by an impartial jury; the right to be notified of the nature and circumstances of the alleged crime; the right to confront witnesses who will testify against the accused; the right to find witnesses who will speak in favor of the accused; and the right to have a lawyer.” (Revolutionary War and Beyond)

The Fourteenth Amendment guarantees the rights of individuals to be protected by the laws regardless of their citizenship.  No person will be denied their rights to the due process of the laws and all will be afforded equal protection.  The Fourth Amendment states “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”(Legal Information Institution)

As a new member to the police force is it important to understand the laws that govern police actions.  A police officer cannot question an individual without reading them the Miranda Law, their right to remain silent and to obtain legal representation.  However, they can use the intelligent waiver which is, do you understand these rights as they have been explained to you? Having these rights in mind, do you wish to talk to us now?  This is verifying the suspect understand that they are willing speaking without and coercion.   Then it is legal to question and interrogate the individual legally.  During the questioning, if at any time the individual decides to change their mind about being questioned without legal counsel, the officer must stop and wait for the attorney.

The Sixth Amendment requires the police officer to execute the trial in a timely manner.  Meaning, an individual cannot be held indefinitely because you suspect that they are guilty of a crime.  The evidence has to be presented in court within the time specifications set in that state.  The jury will be impartial, the police have no rights to select or be involved in that.  Any eye witnesses being used have the right to be questioned by the accused lawyer in court.  This prevents an individual from making false accusations against an individual, and the individual being punished unfairly as a result.

Under the Fourth Amendment, a police cannot search or seize property without probable cause.  This cause typically falls into four categories of circumstantial evidence, observation, information, and expertise.  If you pull over an individual for a routine traffic stop, and you see a digital scale, plastic baggies, and cash in the back seat it is probable to search the car based on that observation.  However, you cannot go to a suspected drug dealers house and search based on that assumption.  In most cases a warrant is necessary to legally search.  And finally the Fourteenth Amendment guides the legal rights regardless of race or citizenship.  The police cannot arrest an individual who is a citizen of another country and deny them their legal rights to trial.  They are protected by all the United States laws from the arrest to their trial.

References

Miranda Law: A Guide to the Privilege against Self-Incrimination.  Retrieved from: http://faculty.ncwc.edu/mstevens/410/410lect19.htm

Revolutionary War and Beyond.  Retrieved from: http://www.revolutionary-war-and-beyond.com/6th-amendment.html

Legal Information Institution.  Retrieved from: http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/fourth_amendment

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