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Name: Interrogations & Confessions

During appellant’s first interview with police, the detectives who questioned him did not provide Miranda warnings until over two hours into the interview, elicited a confession of his involvement in the underlying crimes in that prewarning period and then, after the warnings, reinterrogated him about the same facts. The Court of Appeal agreed with appellant that the trial court prejudicially erred when it concluded defendant was not in custody when he was initially questioned by detectives without Miranda warnings. The court also agreed that appellant’s first interview with police should be excluded because the detectives utilized a “two-step interrogation technique,” which, as the United States Supreme Court stated in Missouri v. Seibert (2004) 542 U.S. 600, 616-617, makes both the unwarned and warned statements inadmissible. Appellant was prejudiced by the admission of the first interview. Thus, the court reversed his convictions for two first degree murders with special circumstances, two robberies, active gang participation and various enhancements.