Bicycle Injury Lawyer, Criminal Defense Lawyer

Miranda and your Wisconsin OWI Case

In Wisconsin there is a form called the Wisconsin DOT Alcohol/Drug Influence Report.  This form is often completed after a stop, after field sobriety tests are given and after the person is at the police station.  Thus, by this point, the police have already obtained a lot of information and have by their own admission obtained enough for probable cause to arrest.  The form lists a person's "pre-interrogation warning."  It states, "Before we ask you any questions, you must understand your rights.  You have the right to remain silent.  Anything you say can and will b used against you in court.  You have the right to talk to a lawyer before questioning and to have the lawyer with you during questioning.  If you cannot afford a lawyer and want one, a lawyer will be appointed for you without charge prior to any questioning.  If you decide to start answering questions at this time, you can stop anytime during the questioning.  Waiver of rights.  I have read, or have had read to me this statement of my rights.  I understand what my rights are.  I am willing to answer questions at this time.  I do not want a lawyer at this time.  I understand and know what I am going."

If the person signs and agrees to wavie their rights, the police ask specific questions intended to limit the person's future defenses.  "Were you operating a motor vehicle."  "What street or highway were you on."  Where were you going."  "When did you last sleep."  "How much sleep did you have."  "What time is it."  "Do you have GERD or diabetes."  "Have you been drinking."  "How much, time started, time stopped."  "What have you been drinking."  And several other incriminating questions.

Most people are intimidated by law enforcement and answer these questions even though all the person has to do is say no.  The fact that the police place a person in the back of their squad and drive them to the station (leaving the person's car behind) tends to make most people think they are being arrested and have to comply with the officer.  However, in Wisconsin from the time a person is stopped they need only give their name and i.d. to the officer.  They do not need to answer incriminating questions or perform field sobreity tests (which provide incriminating video evidence) or take a preliminary breat test/ PBT.