Persuasive Writing Hall of Fame: Miranda v. Arizona

MAKING YOUR POINT SIMPLY & WITH CLARITY

WHAT'S SO GOOD ABOUT THIS BRIEF: 

The first line is brilliantly simple and clear. There is no doubt in the reader's mind what the Plaintiff's position is, and nearly no doubt about his correctness. The second sentence backs up the Plaintiff's position immediately, acknowledging implicitly that the right to counsel is not yet the law, but explaining how this Court gets there; it's the inevitable next step - the law has been moving in this direction for thirty years...

Read for yourself: 


Supreme Court of the United States.
Ernesto A. MIRANDA, Petitioner,
v.
THE STATE OF ARIZONA, Respondent.
January 19, 1966.

On Writ of Certiorari to the Supreme Court of the State of Arizona
Brief for Petitioner
Summary of Argument

There is a right to counsel for arrested persons when interrogated by the police. The law has been growing in this direction for more than thirty years. The federal experience from Johnson v. Zerbst, 304 U.S. 458, 58 Sup. Ct. 1019, 82 L. Ed. 1461 (1938) through the series of cases culminating in Mallory v. United States, 354 U.S. 449, 77 Sup. Ct. 1356, 1 L. Ed. 2d 1479 (1957), and the Public Defender Act of 1964 (78 Stat. 552, 18 U.S.C. Sec. 3006A), and applying Federal Criminal Rules 5 and 44, amount to a requirement that all defendants be informed of their right to counsel and be given counsel swiftly upon their arrest. In the states, Powell v. Alabama, 287 U.S. 45, 53 Sup. Ct. 55, 77 L. Ed. 158 (1932) asserted as a constitutional requirement of state procedure that a person charged with a capital crime have “the guiding hand of counsel at every step in the proceedings against him.” 287 U.S. at 69.