Monday, November 14, 2005

Can it Be...A Law Related Post?

CrimLaw II question:
A detective is questioning a suspect. About 7 1/2 hours later, the detective says this:

And…and…and it’s [inaudible] to defend yourself, see? So you already violated your probation, so its not gonna…its not gonna be anymore of a probation violation by having a gun. And it’s…if you explain this away by—OK, I had a gun, but it was because I was defending myself—and…and so you may do some time as far as the probation violation, but you won’t be no time as far as murder. Does that make sense to you? So what does that mean?

Immediately the suspect says it was self defense and makes a confession with the detective offering him helpful details, like what kind of car the suspect was supposed to be in, and what kind of weapon he supposedly used.
Spot the issue:
A. Jackson v. Denno, Schneckloth v. Bustamante, Malloy v. Hogan
B. Issue? The detective clearly must have been speaking hypothetically about a jury trial and no reasonable person could think it was an inducement to confess

If you answered A., that stuff may go over well in academia, but you're in the real world now. WRONG
If you answered B., you'll make a great judge and a better appellate judge.

Attorneys for years have been busting their butts to get the police to tape interrogations. Because after all, defendants always lie about these things. (page 6, first paragraph) After all, no responsible police oficer would make such an offer to a suspect!
You would have thought it'd make a difference, right? Wrong. The justifications just get more elaborate. So much for increased accountability of police officers.
Jack

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