3. There is no need for you to memorize the rights warning, administer them
from your memory, and then testify in court that you did so.
investigators think that this will impress the court with their memory
capabilities. Actually, it is a combination tailor-made for disaster. Instead
of impressing the court, you risk doing just the opposite.
At trial, the
accused may testify that he was not properly advised of his rights.
person who did the rights advisement, your testimony will be absolutely
critical. You will, literally, make or break the government's case. Unless
you testify in a credible manner, the battle will be lost before it has even
At trial, all eyes will focus on you.
Your testimony must be
convincing. The defense attorney, of course, will be trying to impeach you,
trying to show that your memory is bad and that you did not adequately advise
the suspect of his rights. Do not take it personal -- the defense counsel is
only doing his job. The point is that if you do your job properly, the defense
counsel will not be able to impeach, or destroy, the effectiveness of your
You must be prepared for what will happen at trial.
defense questions you, it will NOT be like the following:
Did you advise the suspect of his rights?
Did you tell him his rights under Article 31, UCMJ?
Did you also advise him of his right to counsel under Miranda?
More specifically, did you advise him that he had a right to remain
Did you tell him he had a right to an attorney?
Did you tell him he could have the attorney present during the
Did you tell him he could consult with the attorney prior to
Do not expect it to go so smoothly. As was noted, testifying in the court
is not quite so simple. In the above example, the witness is not really even