My name is Robert Healey and I am a lawyer that limits his practice to OVI defense in southwest Ohio. Currently I manage the DUI office in Dayton, Ohio, where I attended law school. This blog is written by me to help potential clients in the Dayton area that have been charged with an OVI.
So you were arrested for DUI and the police failed to read you your rights. You want to know if this is a defense that can help you avoid a conviction for DUI.
The answer is it depends. Your lawyer will need to examine what you said and when.
Miranda warnings are not required to be used at all. They merely ensure that when a suspect is in custody and being interrogated that they are given the warnings.
Failure to give the warnings will cause the statements to be subject to suppression and exclusion. This means that they cannot be used at trial.
If you offer admissions to a police officer before you are in custody, or before you are asked questions, the statement cannot be excluded. You should always be wary of what you say to the police.
Specific to a DUI case we often see Miranda come up in the post-arrest interview back at the station. This is where the police look to solicit a confession from you.
They will almost always give you the warnings before asking you to admit drinking alcohol, driving, and being under the influence of alcohol.
A traffic stop is not always considered being in custody for the purpose of Miranda warnings. This means that the savvy police officer will often ask you questions about drinking and driving that can be used against you even without the warnings.
You do not have to make any admissions to the police. The best thing to do is give them your license, registration, and insurance. When asked if you have been drinking, politely tell them that you are not making any admissions.