Jacksonville Florida Arrest: When is a Jacksonville Criminal Defendant “In Custody”

In Jacksonville, Florida, a police officer must have probable cause to arrest a person. However, police can conduct a consensual encounter with an individual without probable cause. Therefore, it is very important to review any kind of police contact to determine if it is a consensual encounter or illegal police detention.

For example, the Florida Supreme Court visited this issue on July 8, 2010. In

Caldwell v. Florida, an officer accused Mr. Caldwell of Florida Burglary. The officer read him his Miranda rights, after which Caldwell asked if he was under arrest. The officer stated that he was not under arrest but the officer needed to ask him some questions. The officer asked Caldwell to ride with him to view the surveillance tape where the burglary took place, and Caldwell agreed. The officer frisked Mr. Cadwell, prior to him entering the car. After arriving at the site of the burglary, but before he saw the tape, Caldwell confessed to the officer.

The Supreme Court of Florida held that Miranda warnings do not result in a seizure as a matter of law. Instead, when it comes to a 4th Amendment seizure analysis, a Miranda warning should be analyzed through the totality of the circumstances and not be the dispositive factor in that analysis.

The Court set forth the following four-factors to determine whether a reasonable person would consider himself to be in custody under the totality of the circumstances:

  1. The manner in which the police summon the suspect for questioning;
  2. The purpose, place, and manner of the interrogation;
  3. The extent that the suspect is confronted with evidence of guilt; and
  4. Whether the suspect is informed that he is free to leave.

If you have been arrest in Jacksonville, Florida, contact a Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyer at (904) 685-1200, extension 103.  Your arrest may have been based on a violation of your 4th Amendment rights.  

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