Monday, July 22, 2019
Right to Counsel Essay Example for Free
Right to Counsel Essay 1)Ã Ã The right to counsel as guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution refers to the right of the accused to have the court appoint an attorney for him for his defense at the critical stages of criminal proceedings (Wests Encyclopedia of American Law, 1998). These crucial stages are arraignment, trial, custodial interrogation, police line-up after charges have been filed, sentencing and until appeal of a judgment of conviction (Wests Encyclopedia of American Law). The Right to Counsel Clause of the Constitution attaches during custodial interrogation when law enforcement officers deprive the accused of his freedom and thereafter subjects him to questioning. The right to counsel has some bearing with the due process clause especially in the case where the accused is charged with an offense punishable with death penalty. In this case, the court must appoint a competent counsel for the defense of an indigent accused (Wests Encyclopedia of American Law). 2)Ã Ã Ã The U.S. Supreme Court laid down the standards for law enforcement officers during custodial investigations in the case of Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436. According to the Court, the suspect Ã¢â¬Å"must be warned that they have the right to remain silent; that any statements they make may be used as evidence against them; that they have the right to an attorney; and that if they cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for them prior to any questioning if they so desireÃ¢â¬ (Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436).Ã Any evidence obtained in violation of these principles shall not be admissible in court in accordance with the exclusionary rule. This being so, the evidence cannot be used against the accused (Wests Encyclopedia of American Law). Waiver of the Miranda rights must be made knowingly and intelligently and should the suspect invoke his right to counsel to be present during the interrogation, the police officers must cease the questioning.