It Felt Like Police Brutality: Do You Have Recourse?

by Richard on July 24, 2013

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You have recently had a bad encounter with the police that resulted in your arrest. Or, you may have had an encounter with the police that did not result in your arrest, but was a very unpleasant experience. After the fact, you are left wondering “was that police brutality?” If it was, you may also be wondering if there is anything you can do about the event. The first thing that you must do is distinguish if it was, in fact, police brutality.

Types Of Police Brutality

Physical Abuse While Restrained  The most common type of police brutality is physical abuse when the accused has been restrained or handcuffed. Any type of physical abuse, including slapping, hitting, beating, or kicking, is considered brutality. Being beaten in any way while restrained could result in injury, or even death.

A personal injury lawyer in Atlanta states that “Any person, business, or public entity is capable of committing tortious acts resulting in death.” This, in rare cases, could include police officers using excessive force in performance of their duty.

Mental Intimidation  If an officer restrains you and begins to make threats, such as taking you somewhere and leaving you, threatening to do harm to you unless you talk, or saying anything that would instill fear is brutality, this is mental intimidation.

Failing To Incarcerate  If you have been arrested, the police are required to take you immediately to jail. Any failure in this is a type of brutality. This includes leaving the suspect locked up in a car for any period of time, or “forgetting” them in a holding area.

Verbal Abuse  Police officers do not have the authority to belittle and berate a person. Use of vulgar terms, name calling, shouting, and even snide remarks made with the intent to hurt or intimidate is police brutality.

Demanding Favors  An officer who demands favors from someone by threatening arrest is guilty of police brutality.

Threatening Family  No officer should make threats against family members as a way to coerce someone into doing a specific act. If they do, they are in violation of their duties and are committing police brutality.

What Recourse You Have

If you have been victimized by the police, it is in your best interest to seek legal representation from an attorney who handles police brutality cases. A law firm that is experienced in this type of event will be able to help you protect your rights. You may be entitled to specific forms of compensation for your experience.

It is also very important to file a claim for police brutality to help protect others. Your resolve to stand up for your rights may prevent someone else from experiencing the same type of treatment.

Speak with your attorney about the entire incident. If you have any photographic evidence of injuries, witnesses to the event, or any other information concerning what happened, you should bring this with you for your initial consultation. Your attorney will review all the information and determine how to proceed with your case.

The police have a responsibility to the public. They are employed by the taxpayers to “serve and protect.” When an officer violates this code, they make all the other honorable officers look bad. It is important to take action against the officer who is violating their duties to ensure that the rest of the police force does not lose the respect that they deserve.

Richard Freeland is a freelance writer and presents these tips on recognizing police brutality for the benefit of those who suspect they’ve been victimized. Stokes and Kopitsky, P.A., a personal injury lawyer in Atlanta , vigorously protects the rights of people who have had excessive police force used against them, including pursuing just compensation for personal injuries.


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