State v. Nicholson
Jamaican's Waiver Was Not Knowing, Intelligent, Voluntary
Criminal Law | Evidence | Admissibility
- Superior Court
- Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport
- Apr 18 2013 (Date Decided)
- Thim, J.T.R.
A court may grant a defendant's motion to suppress evidence, if the defendant's waiver of his Miranda rights was not knowing, intelligent and voluntary. Allegedly, a victim was stabbed, and the defendant, Cargil Nicholson, was arrested. Nicholson moved to suppress his statement to the police. "The state bears the burden of establishing, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the defendant's waiver of his Miranda rights was knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily made," pursuant to State v. Hernandez, a 1987 decision of the Connecticut Supreme Court. The court found that the Nicholson, who was from Jamaica, had a 10th grade education and a restricted ability to read English. Nicholson lacked a criminal record, except for an arrest for possession of marijuana. A tape of the police interview indicated that after Nicholson asked the police, "Do I have a right to an attorney?" Nicholson said, "I don't want to give away my rights." The police allegedly answered that Nicholson should ask his attorney to meet Nicholson immediately, and Nicholson said, "Let's get on with it because I still don't want to give up my rights." Nicholson signed the statement in which he waived his Miranda rights and claimed that someone allegedly broke into or pushed his away into Nicholson's apartment. The court found that Nicholson's waiver of his Miranda rights was not knowing, intelligent and voluntary, and it granted Nicholson's motion to suppress.