Is a juvenile entitled to have Miranda rights read to them before being interrogated?

Yes, a juvenile is entitled to have their Miranda rights read to them before being interrogated. In fact, law enforcement officers are required to state Miranda rights in a language that the juvenile understands. If an officer fails to read the Miranda rights to a juvenile, any statements made during the interrogation may not be permissible in court or take make a conviction.

UPDATED: Jul 14, 2023Fact Checked

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Jeffrey Johnson

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Mary Martin

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Mary Martin has been a legal writer and editor for over 20 years, responsible for ensuring that content is straightforward, correct, and helpful for the consumer. In addition, she worked on writing monthly newsletter columns for media, lawyers, and consumers. Ms. Martin also has experience with internal staff and HR operations. Mary was employed for almost 30 years by the nationwide legal publi...

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UPDATED: Jul 14, 2023

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UPDATED: Jul 14, 2023Fact Checked

A juvenile is entitled to have their Miranda rights read to them if they are being held in custody and being interrogated by a law enforcement officer. Law enforcement officers are required to state Miranda rights to a juvenile in a language that the juvenile understands.

Arresting a juvenile can begin the process of holding them in custody. The term “custody” means that a reasonable person would not consider themselves free to leave. A juvenile’s understanding of “custody” differs depending on their age and mental abilities.

If a juvenile is taken into custody, the arresting officer is required to make a good faith effort to locate a parent or guardian of the juvenile. The arresting officer must explain to this person that the juvenile is in custody. They must also state the delinquent act that the juvenile is alleged to have committed and advise the adult of the juvenile’s Miranda rights.

The issue of custody is muddled when it comes to schools. School employees do not have to advise a juvenile of the juvenile’s Miranda rights. The exception is if the school employee acts as an agent of a law enforcement officer. This is becoming increasingly common. There are now many law enforcement officers at schools. These police officers or sheriff’s deputies are often called “school resource officers” or SROs. SROs often work with school employees to ask students about alleged offenses. The juvenile may not have committed the offenses at school.

If a SRO directs a school employee to interrogate a juvenile while holding the juvenile in custody, the juvenile may have made statements without being read their Miranda rights by a law enforcement officer. A juvenile can move to suppress statements that they have made without being advised of their Miranda rights by a law enforcement officer.

Case Studies: Miranda Rights for Juveniles and Insurance Considerations

Case Study 1: Failure to Read Miranda Rights

A law enforcement officer arrests a juvenile and begins interrogation without first reading the Miranda rights to the juvenile. As a result, the juvenile makes incriminating statements during the interrogation. However, since the officer failed to comply with the requirement of reading Miranda rights, the statements may be deemed inadmissible in court.

This case study highlights the importance of law enforcement officers understanding and adhering to the legal requirement of reading Miranda rights to juveniles to ensure the admissibility of statements and protect the juvenile’s rights.

Case Study 2: Language Barrier and Miranda Rights

A non-English-speaking juvenile is taken into custody and interrogated by law enforcement officers who do not provide a translation of the Miranda rights in a language the juvenile understands. In this case, the lack of understanding of the rights being communicated to the juvenile may lead to potential violations of due process.

It emphasizes the need for law enforcement agencies to have appropriate measures in place to ensure effective communication and understanding of Miranda rights, such as providing interpreters or translated materials.

Case Study 3: School Resource Officer and Custodial Interrogation

A school resource officer (SRO) directs a school employee to interrogate a juvenile while holding the juvenile in custody. However, the SRO fails to read the Miranda rights to the juvenile, resulting in potential violations of the juvenile’s constitutional rights. This case study demonstrates the complex dynamics between law enforcement officers, school employees, and juvenile rights within the school setting.

It underscores the importance of understanding the role of SROs and ensuring that custodial interrogations adhere to legal requirements, including the reading of Miranda rights.

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Jeffrey Johnson

Insurance Lawyer

Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

Insurance Lawyer

Mary Martin

Published Legal Expert

Mary Martin has been a legal writer and editor for over 20 years, responsible for ensuring that content is straightforward, correct, and helpful for the consumer. In addition, she worked on writing monthly newsletter columns for media, lawyers, and consumers. Ms. Martin also has experience with internal staff and HR operations. Mary was employed for almost 30 years by the nationwide legal publi...

Published Legal Expert

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about legal topics and insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything legal and insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by experts.

Get Legal Help Today

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