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Old July 11, 2013, 11:40 AM   #77
Frank Ettin
Join Date: November 23, 2005
Location: California - San Francisco
Posts: 8,701
Originally Posted by jimpeel
...When one invokes their Fifth Amendment right the listener will usually take that as an avoidance due to guilt not due to innocence. So this ruling places one in the realm of damned if you do and damned if you don't. If one does invoke, they are deemed to be guilty and have something to hide;...
The reality is that the protection afforded by the Fifth Amendment right not to be compelled to testify against oneself only affects whether, and under what circumstances, your silence may be commented upon in legal proceedings or otherwise used as evidence. It does not, and can not, affect a listener's perception or what a listener thinks.

It you refuse to answer a question, the listener is going to think whatever he pleases.

Originally Posted by jimpeel
...if one does not invoke they are deemed to have waived their right to silence and assumption of innocence.
What is this "assumption of innocence" and where do you get it?

There is such a thing as the "presumption of innocence", which is essentially a technical rule of evidence and the burden of proof which has procedural significance.

The presumption of innocence can affect the protocols for dealing with suspects or prisoners before trial, and relates directly to the prosecutor's burden of proof at trial. I see nothing in Salinas that affects that.

But there is no "assumption of innocence". Folks will assume that you're innocent or guilty as they choose.
"It is long been a principle of ours that one is no more armed because he has possession of a firearm than he is a musician because he owns a piano. There is no point in having a gun if you are not capable of using it skillfully." -- Jeff Cooper
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