Each year approximately one million juveniles in the United States are arrested and read the Miranda warnings. Though studies have shown that the majority of those children do not understand the warnings, most of them must decide alone whether to waive their constitutional rights— and nearly all ultimately make that choice without the help of an attorney. The Supreme Court has recognized that children differ from adults in critical ways, and those differences have important implications for juveniles’ ability to meaningfully waive their Miranda rights. To ensure that juveniles’ constitutional rights are protected, the Supreme Court should take up the issue and create a per se rule making a juvenile’s Miranda waiver invalid unless that juvenile first consulted with counsel.
Sara P. Cressey,
Overawed and Overwhelmed: Juvenile Miranda Incomprehension,
Me. L. Rev.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.mainelaw.maine.edu/mlr/vol70/iss1/4