A few days ago, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Salina v. Texas, that if a person remains silent in response to a question/accusation by a police officer, that this silence can be used against them as evidence of guilt if at the time the person is not under arrest and has not been read his/her rights pursuant to Miranda. This article will discuss how this can possibly affect a person who has been arrested and possibly charged with trafficking Xanax.
The context in which the issue arose in Salina, was law enforcement was investigating a homicide. While at the scene of the crime, law enforcement observed shotgun shell casings. Still on the scene, Salina answered some of the law enforcement’s questions, but when asked whether ballistic testing would match the casings to his shotgun, Salina fell silent. The prosecutor argued this silence was evidence that Salina was guilty. The U.S. Supreme Court held that Salina’s silence was properly used against him at trial by the prosecutor. And that to keep the prosecutor from using this silence, Salina would have had to say “I am invoking my right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment,” or “I invoke the Fifth Amendment.” Now, you must be asking, what does this have to do with trafficking Xanax.
It has to do with trafficking Xanax the same as it does in the homicide investigation in Salinas and in other criminal investigations. If you are being investigated for trafficking Xanax remember that just refusing to answer questions by law enforcement will not sufficiently protect your rights. Remaining silent without informing the officer that you are invoking your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent will not prevent your silence from being used against you. Therefore, it always best to say I’m invoking my Fifth Amendment rights, I’m remaining silent, but you may call my lawyer, Matthews Bark. His number is 407-865-8888.
What’s interesting is, it appears from the Court’s decision if you are under arrest at the time questions are posed to you by law enforcement, that you can just remain silent, and that silence cannot be used against you, whether it be for trafficking Xanax, or another allegation.