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Capacity to Waive Rights

With the Fifth Amendment right against selfincrimination and the Fourteenth Amendment right to due process as its grounding, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Miranda v. Arizona (1966), established important procedural protections for criminal suspects in custodial interrogations. Aware of the inherently coercive nature of interrogations and of suspects' risk of selfincrimination, the Miranda Court mandated that the police notify suspects of their right to silence and legal representation. The Court further ruled that a suspect may waive these rights, but the waiver would be considered valid only if it were provided knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily.

To determine the validity of a Miranda waiver, courts typically examine the totality of circumstances under which the waiver was given, including both situational characteristics (e.g., length of the interrogation, strategies ...

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