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Competency to confess refers to a suspect's ability to make a knowing, intelligent, and voluntary waiver of the Miranda warnings at the time of police questioning. Confessions that are given after a suspect waives his or her Miranda rights are sometimes challenged on the basis that the suspect was not competent to confess, meaning that the suspect was not capable of making a knowing, intelligent, and voluntary waiver of the Miranda rights and therefore could not have understood, appreciated, and willingly waived those rights. A confession that is successfully challenged cannot be used in court against the defendant. Assessment of competency is therefore performed after the confession is given. This assessment is performed by a mental health professional (often a forensic psychologist) and takes into ...

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