Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and part of the Bill of Rights that provides a right to avoid self-incrimination, a right to a grand jury indictment in capital or infamous crime cases, a right to be free from double jeopardy, and a right to just compensation for property taken by the government.
The Fifth Amendment includes more than just a right against self-incrimination,
The Fifth Amendment is restricted on its face to “criminal cases.” However, the Supreme Court ruled that the Fifth Amendment applies to criminal and civil cases and extends to nonjudicial proceedings, such as legislative investigations and administrative hearings. The protection of the clause extends only to people, not organizations such as corporations or unions, and is applicable to witnesses as well as to the accused.
The self-incrimination clause is violated if evidence compelled by the government incriminates the person who provides it. Given these standards, self-incrimination violations occur most commonly during police interrogations and government hearings. Although the purpose of the clause is to eliminate the inherently coercive and inquisitional atmosphere of the interrogation room, a person may voluntarily answer any incriminating question or confess to any crime, subject to the requirements for waiver of constitutional rights, even if his or her statements are intended as exculpatory but lend themselves to prosecutorial use as incriminatory.
The Court first addressed the meaning of the self-incrimination clause in Twining v. New Jersey
The Court abandoned this position in its 1966 decision in Miranda v. Arizona
When Chief Justice Warren E. Burger replaced Chief Justice Earl Warren in 1964 and Justice Harry A. Blackmun replaced Justice Abe Fortas in 1970, they joined Justices Byron R. White, John M. Harlan II, and Potter Stewart in support of a narrow application of Miranda. These five justices constituted the majority in Harris v. New York
The erosion of Miranda continued in several rulings in the 1970’s. In Michigan v. Tucker
By the mid-1980’s it was clear that the Court under Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist would continue to construe Miranda very narrowly. In New York v. Quarles
At the turn of the century, the Court’s decision to maintain the precedent with continued narrow application of Miranda appeared well entrenched. The majority of the justices appeared to be comfortable with that approach, and changes appeared unlikely.
Also under the Fifth Amendment, a person shall not be subject “for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.” The underlying premise of the double jeopardy
The Court ruled that there is no double jeopardy in trying someone twice for the same offense if the jury is unable to reach a verdict in United States v. Ball
The double jeopardy clause also prohibits prosecutors from trying defendants a second time for the express purpose of obtaining a more severe sentence. However, in 1969 the Court decided that there is no constitutional bar to imposing a more severe sentence on reconviction (after the first conviction is thrown out), provided the sentencing judge is not motivated by vindictiveness. In North Carolina v. Pearce; Chaffin v. Stynchcombe (1973), it ruled that the guarantee against double jeopardy requires that punishment already exacted must be fully credited to the new sentence.
The double jeopardy clause also bars multiple punishments for the same offense. In United States v. Ursery
The Fifth Amendment also provides that “no person shall be held for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger.” The grand jury procedure is one of the few provision in the Bill of Rights that has not been incorporated into the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and applied to the states. Instead the Court ruled that states may prosecute on a district attorney’s “information,” which consists of a prosecutor’s accusation under oath in Hurtado v. California
Finally, the Fifth Amendment provides that private property shall not “be taken for public use, without just compensation.” This is referred to as the takings clause
Court decisions in the early and mid-1990’s underscore the complexity and reach of the takings clause. Several cases broadened the powers of the states, and others expanded property rights. In Yee v. Escondido
The Court broadened property rights by holding that land use requirements may be “takings.” The decision in Dolan v. City of Tigard
General works on the Fifth Amendment include Alfredo Garcia’s The Fifth Amendment: A Comprehensive Approach (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2002), Harvey Fireside’s The Fifth Amendment: The Right to Remain Silent (Springfield, N.J.: Enslow, 1998), and Burnham Holmes’s The Fifth Amendment (Englewood Cliffs, N. J.: Silver Burdett Press, 1991). David Bodenhamer’s Fair Trial: Rights of the Accused in American History (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992) presents a useful account of double jeopardy and self-incrimination rights. Also recommended is Anthony Lewis’s Gideon’s Trumpet (1964. New York: Vintage, 1989). A well-written and thorough account of the takings clause is found in Richard Epstein’s Takings: Private Property and the Power of Eminent Domain (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1985). A more scholarly account is James Ely’s The Guardian of Every Other Right: A Constitutional History of Property Rights (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992).
Miranda v. Arizona
Self-incrimination, immunity against