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How have our practices changed since the Miranda v. Arizona
Mirandas court trial was a cut-and-dried affair; the witnesses for the prosecution were Patty McGee, her sister, officers Cooley and Young, and Mirandas own written confession was the sole item entered into evidence. [ No witnesses were presented on Ernests behalf. The key to the trial, felt his lawyer, 73-year-old Alvin Moore, was that Mirandas confession was coerced and thereby
inadmissible. Moore was appointed by the court and reluctantly agreed to serve. He had extensive experience in criminal law, and had an outstanding record in defending rapists: in 35 trials, only one defendant had been convicted of rape. Moore had only the month before added his name to the list of attorneys who would accept the $100 fee for defending the countys indigent clients; he had stopped practicing criminal law several years before out of self-preservation, he told Liva Baker. In close association with criminals, you begin to think like criminals, Moore said. In self-protection, I gradually began to withdraw from the practice of criminal law. After reviewing Mirandas record, Moore felt that an insanity defense would be appropriate, and filed notice of his strategy one day before the case was set for trial. Over the next several weeks, Miranda met with psychiatrists for the defense and the state, who eventually told the court that Miranda was at least fit to stand trial. Even though Ernest was found to be mentally abnormal, he was able to understand the charges against him, the possible ramifications of a guilty verdict, as well as assist in his own defense. The reports forced Moore to abandon his insanity defense claim. The case was set for trial in mid-June 1963. ]
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