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COA denies Miranda rights appeal in drunken driving case

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a trial court’s decision that a man arrested for drunken driving was not entitled to counsel or a Miranda warning when police asked for his consent to a blood draw because he was not being interrogated at the time.

Citing Schmerber v. California, 384 U.S. 757, 761 (1966), the Indiana appeals court stated that in the case of Michael E. Cohee v. State of Indiana, No.89A01-1009-CR-472, Cohee’s chemical test would not be considered self-incriminating evidence protected under the Fifth Amendment.

The appeals court also cited Dalton v. State, 773 N.E.2d 332, 335 (Ind. Ct. App. 2002), stating that a person who drives on Indiana’s roads has no right to consult with an attorney prior to deciding whether to submit to a chemical test under the Implied Consent law.
 
In April 2010, Richmond police stopped Cohee’s car for a broken tail light. The officer who initiated the traffic stop noted that Cohee smelled of alcohol and had bloodshot eyes, and subsequently arrested Cohee after he failed field sobriety tests.

Cohee argued that once police told him he was “under arrest,” he should have been read his rights under Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966). Citing that case, the appeals court ruled that although Cohee was technically in police custody, he was not the subject of interrogation, which Miranda defines as “express questioning and words or actions on the part of the police that the police know are reasonably likely to elicit an incriminating response from the suspect.”

 

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  1. I just wanted to point out that Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, Senator Feinstein, former Senate majority leader Bill Frist, and former attorney general John Ashcroft are responsible for this rubbish. We need to keep a eye on these corrupt, arrogant, and incompetent fools.

  2. Well I guess our politicians have decided to give these idiot federal prosecutors unlimited power. Now if I guy bounces a fifty-dollar check, the U.S. attorney can intentionally wait for twenty-five years or so and have the check swabbed for DNA and file charges. These power hungry federal prosecutors now have unlimited power to mess with people. we can thank Wisconsin's Jim Sensenbrenner and Diane Feinstein, John Achcroft and Bill Frist for this one. Way to go, idiots.

  3. I wonder if the USSR had electronic voting machines that changed the ballot after it was cast? Oh well, at least we have a free media serving as vicious watchdog and exposing all of the rot in the system! (Insert rimshot)

  4. Jose, you are assuming those in power do not wish to be totalitarian. My experience has convinced me otherwise. Constitutionalists are nearly as rare as hens teeth among the powerbrokers "managing" us for The Glorious State. Oh, and your point is dead on, el correcta mundo. Keep the Founders’ (1791 & 1851) vision alive, my friend, even if most all others, and especially the ruling junta, chase only power and money (i.e. mammon)

  5. Hypocrisy in high places, absolute immunity handed out like Halloween treats (it is the stuff of which tyranny is made) and the belief that government agents are above the constitutions and cannot be held responsible for mere citizen is killing, perhaps has killed, The Republic. And yet those same power drunk statists just reel on down the hallway toward bureaucratic fascism.

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