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Are Confessions Admissible Evidence in a Criminal Case?

inmate sitting at interrogation table in handcuffs with a cup of water in front of him

After being accused of a criminal offense, some defendants are quick to admit wrongdoing. In some cases, long-term interrogations push people to confess to criminal offenses they didn’t even commit, as covered in the Netflix show ‘The Confession Tapes.’ Ultimately, in a state of distress, suspects could make rash decisions about what to say to law enforcement. But can these verbal confessions always be used in court?

Are Voluntary Confessions Admissible?

In short, yes. If a suspect or defendant voluntarily admits to committing a crime, it can be used against them. Once a voluntary confession has been made, it makes the defense case entirely more difficult. This is why defendants should never make voluntary confessions before consulting with an attorney.

What Makes a Confession Involuntary?

You may be surprised how often involuntary confessions are made. A confession may be deemed involuntary if it can be proven that the suspect made the confession under duress, coercion, or if they were not made aware of their constitutional rights prior to being subject to questioning. These circumstances may render the verbal confession invalid.

To Confess or Not To Confess

You should use your right to remain silent at all times.

This includes:

  • During the initial investigation
  • During pre-arrest questioning
  • During your arrest
  • After your arrest

The best way to keep yourself safe is to stay quiet. If you admit to committing a crime, it is extremely difficult to convince a judge and jury later that you are innocent.

Criminal Defense Attorney in Columbia

If you are arrested in the Columbia, South Carolina area, do not make any official statements until you have spoken with our knowledgeable criminal defense attorney at The Law Offices of Marion M. Moses, LLC. When you are suspected of committing a criminal offense, you must protect yourself. The best way to do that is to work with a criminal defense attorney who can guide you throughout your case. Reach out to our team today to get started on your defense with The Law Offices of Marion M. Moses, LLC.