….then taken to the police station and required to give two samples of my breath. Based on the test results, I was charged with DWI. I was never advised of my “Miranda” rights. Can the test results be used against me?
Yes, the breath test results can be used against you regardless of whether you were ever advised of your Miranda rights. Indeed, Miranda rights have nothing whatsoever to do with providing breath samples upon request by law enforcement for suspicion of violating the DWI statute.
If a law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that a person has violated the DWI statute, they are only required to read the Attorney General’s Standard Statement promulgated on July 1, 2012 prior to the request for breath samples.
Miranda warnings only apply in criminal and quasi-criminal cases when an individual is in custody and questions are asked designed to elicit incriminating statements against the Defendant. This is what is characterized as custodial interrogation. IN the context of a DWI, Miranda warnings are applicable when the Defendant is asked questions about prior alcohol consumption.
These questions relate to what the person was drinking, where they were drinking, the amount they were drinking, and the time they were drinking. In certain cases where operation of the motor vehicle is in issue, these questions would also have to be preceded by Miranda warning.
Miranda warnings are very significant in criminal cases. They are less significant in DWI cases. While any admissions of prior drinking can be an important fact in a DWI case, the absence of Miranda warnings will rarely be an important consideration in deciding the ultimate determination of a DWI.
If you need assistance with a DWI in New Jersey, give us a call and tell us what happened…. and then let one of the top DWI attorneys get to work for you.