Court: another look at Miranda

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The Supreme Court agreed today it will reconsider the scope of the familiar police warnings that begin, “You have the right to remain silent.”

The Associated Press said the Justices agreed to consider whether physical evidence seized without such warnings can be used at trial.

The case is a follow-up to a ruling three years ago that upheld the warnings laid out in the landmark Miranda vs. Arizona case in 1966. Today, the court said it would hear the Bush administration’s appeal in the case of a Colorado man arrested for violating a domestic restraining order. Police started to read Samuel Patane his rights, but Patane cut them off. Police then asked Patane if he owned any guns. Told yes, police looked for and found an illegal pistol.

A federal appeals court ruled that the pistol could not be used against Patane at trial. Police found the gun because they questioned Patane, and the questioning was done without Miranda warnings, the lower court said.

The Bush administration argued that the appeals court ruled incorrectly. The high court should step in “because the suppression of probative physical evidence in such cases imposes serious costs on the administration of justice,” Solicitor General Theodore Olson told the Justices.


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