Special Provisions for Suspects Who Cannot Read

Question: Are there special provisions made for suspects who cannot read?

Answer: Miranda rights are nearly always literally read or explained by the police officer, which would mean that the person being interrogated does not necessarily have to be able to read just to understand the words that are recited by the police officer. Illiteracy does not in any negate the Miranda rights not does it enhance them. The Miranda rights do not require that a person sign a written waiver; and even if it did, the police would be able to indicate to the accused what the paper they’re signing states. So long as the prosecutor is able to establish that the person freely, knowingly and understandingly gave up the rights, the court would likely sustain the police and prosecutor’s attempt to have the statements made, even by an illiterate person, admitted into evidence.

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