Silence Right Must Be Invoked Explicitly, Court Says
By Greg Stohr
June 1 (Bloomberg) — Criminal suspects must explicitly invoke their right to remain silent to force police to stop questioning, a divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled.
The 5-4 decision upholds the Michigan murder conviction of a man who sat silent throughout most of a three-hour interrogation by police. The ruling blunts the force of the landmark 1966 Miranda v. Arizona decision, which required police to inform suspects of their rights.
“A requirement of an unambiguous invocation of Miranda rights results in an objective inquiry that avoids difficulties of proof and provides guidance to officers on how to proceed in the face of ambiguity,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the majority.