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Supreme Court Will Review Miranda Rule

October 13, 1987|Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court said today it will review whether its Miranda ruling gives suspects adequate protection of their constitutional rights.

The justices will use the case of a street gang member convicted of murder in Illinois to determine whether warnings police have been required to give suspects since the court's 1966 Miranda decision adequately protect their right to legal help.

The court 21 years ago ruled that police must warn suspects about their right to remain silent, to have a lawyer present before answering questions and the right to have a lawyer provided if they cannot afford one.

The court said in a decision called Miranda vs. Arizona that such warnings are needed to protect suspects' right not to incriminate themselves, assured by the Constitution's Fifth Amendment.

But Tyrone Patterson, convicted of a 1983 murder in Evanston, Ill., contends that the Miranda warnings do not assure sufficiently that a suspect's Sixth Amendment right to effective legal help will be protected.

Patterson, a member of the Vice Lords street gang, was convicted in the beating death of James Kevin Jackson, a member of the rival Black Mobsters street gang.

His conviction and 24-year prison sentence were upheld by the Illinois Supreme Court.

While in custody at the Evanston police station, Patterson was informed that he had been indicted by a grand jury for his role in Jackson's death. Patterson said he understood his Miranda rights when read to him by a police officer but agreed to answer questions.

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