Twin Peaks Usenet Archive

Subject: Re: Leland and MIRANDA (was Re: Cooper was given the solution on a silver platter. (was Re: Major glaring diary discrepancy? (and some MAJOR dissatisfactio
From: (Dave Mack)
Date: 1990-12-09, 11:49

In article (Daniel Pedersen - Keren's Daddy) writes:
> >
> >Speaking of lawsuits, Leland's constitutional rights were being demolished in
> >the scene where he is shoved into the cell and questioned - unless during the
> >blackout between the two scenes someone had read him his rights and obtained
> >a signed waiver from him, declining his right to an attorney.
> >
> >The Miranda act, that which just survived an attack on it by Georgie's
> >administration in the Supreme Court, states that a suspect must be read his
> >"you have the right to remain silent..." and that nothing that that suspect
> >says can be used against them in a court of law.  The police are not allowed
> >to question a suspect _and_obtain_a_legitimate_confession_ in the absence of
> >a lawyer representing said suspect.

Drivel. If a prisoner waives his Miranda rights, as Leland did the
first time they arrested him for murder, anything he says, including
a confession, can be used as evidence against him. Of course, the cops
had damn well better have a court stenographer present, or a video tape
camera rolling.

Also, anything a prisoner says to an officer of the court *after* he
has been read the Miranda warning and the officer has ascertained that
the prisoner understands what the warning means (they may have to
read it in Spanish, Vietnamese, whatever, or make sure the prisoner
isn't deaf or on drugs) most certainly can be used as evidence. He
does not have to explicitly waive his rights.

The Miranda warning (from memory, cops are supposed read it from
the card to get the wording exactly right) is:

"You have the right to remain silent. Anything you do say can be used
in court as evidence against you. You have the right to have an
attorney present during questioning. If you cannot afford an attorney,
one will be appointed for you by the court. Do you understand these
rights as I have read them to you?"

The recent Supreme Court decision merely clarified that a prisoner is
entitled to have a lawyer present *every* time he is questioned.

Most television shows are rather sloppy when it comes to the minutiae
of the legal process. Their goal isn't to educate the viewer in the
fine points of the law, it's to present an entertaining story. And
we've already seen that TP has a strong vigilante streak to it -
the questioning of Bernard Renault in the Bookhouse, the raid on
OEJ by Cooper and Truman.

If you want courtroom drama, watch L.A. Law.

-- Dave Mack