Supremes Mandate New Rules for Juvie Confessions – State in the Interest of PMP

[07/29/09- 1:36 pm] In this morning’s Supreme Court decision, State in the Interest of P.M.P. the Justices created new, more restrictive rules that police must follow when attempting to obtain a waiver of the right to remain silent for a juvenile suspect. The Court held that following the filing of a juvenile petition and the issuance of an arrest warrant, a juvenile defendant mat not waive his right to remain silent and give a statement in the absence of counsel, The Court analogized the procedural posture of a juvenile case as a critical stage, the functional equivalent of the return of an indictment in Superior Court. The new procedure conforms to the current practice police must follow in seeking a waiver from a defendant who has been indicted. Under State v. Sanchez, 129 N.J. 261 (1992), such a defendant may not waive his right to counsel and make a statement to the police in the absence of counsel.

Today’s holding in the PMP case, constitutes an additional “bright-line” exception to the Miranda rule where police cannot lawfully obtain the waiver of a defendant for the purpose of obtaining a confession. These cases are:

Attorney Present waiting to speak to defendant -: State vs. Reed, 133 N.J. 237(1993)
Active Bench Warrant – defendant not informed – : State vs. A.G.D., 178 N.J. 56(2003)
Fabrication of Physical to obtain statement – Evidence: State v. Patton, 362 N.J. Super. 16 (A.D. 2003)
Absent Parent & Juvenile under 14 years old:- State v. Presha, 163 N.J. 304 (2000)
Following Indictment – State v. Sanchez, 129 N.J. 261 (1992)
Juvenile following filing of petition and issuance of arrest warrant –
State in the Interest of P.M.P. ___ N.J. ___ (2009)

Download a copy of State of New Jersey In the Interest of P.M.P. (A-63-08).

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