Abdulmutallab and Tsarnaev are two individuals who were charged in high-profile terrorism cases in the United States. Both individuals made statements to law enforcement officers after their arrests, which they sought to suppress in court because the statements were obtained in violation of their Miranda rights.
Abdulmutallab, also known as the “underwear bomber,” attempted to detonate an explosive device on a flight to Detroit on Christmas Day 2009. After being apprehended, he made statements to FBI agents that he claimed were obtained in violation of his Miranda rights. Abdulmutallab argued that the public safety exception did not apply to his case because the threat had been neutralized by the time he was arrested, and he had already been read his Miranda rights before making the statements.
Tsarnaev, one of the two brothers responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013, was apprehended after a manhunt and interrogation. He also sought to suppress his statements, arguing that they were obtained in violation of his Miranda rights. Tsarnaev argued that the public safety exception did not apply because the immediate threat to public safety had already been resolved by the time he was questioned.
Both Abdulmutallab and Tsarnaev argued that the public safety exception did not apply to their cases because the immediate threat to public safety had already passed by the time they were questioned. They contended that the government was using the exception as a way to circumvent the Miranda requirement and use their statements as evidence in court.
The government argued that the public safety exception applied in both cases because there was an ongoing threat to public safety that needed to be neutralized. In Abdulmutallab’s case, the government argued that there was a need to gather information about any potential co-conspirators and to determine if there were any other devices in play. In Tsarnaev’s case, the government argued that there was a need to determine if there were any additional explosive devices and if there were other individuals involved in the attack.
Ultimately, the courts in both cases allowed the use of the statements in evidence, finding that the public safety exception applied because there was an ongoing threat to public safety at the time the statements were made. The courts held that the exception is not limited to immediate threats, but can apply to situations where there is an ongoing threat that needs to be addressed.