State v. George W. Hindsley, 2000 WI App 130, 237 Wis. 2d 358, 614 N.W.2d 48
For Hindsley: James B. Connell
Issue: Whether a deaf suspect, fluent in ASL but with limited proficiency in English, validly waived his Miranda rights, when those rights were explained to him in English-based (“transliteration”) signing.
Holding: When the suspect is advised of Miranda rights in a language other than English (including sign language for a deaf suspect such as Hindsley), the state must produce evidence that the language was one the suspect “was proficient enough to understand the concepts that are involved in Miranda warnings.” ¶¶31-34, citing State v. Santiago, 206 Wis. 2d 3, 556 N.W.2d 687 (1996). The trial court’s findings that Hindsley used ASL and did not understand the particular form of signing (English-based) used to convey the warnings; and that he therefore did not understand the warnings are not clearly erroneous.