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Dealing with Excessive Force by Law Enforcement: Your Legal Options

This content about Excessive Force by Law Enforcement was written by a third party and does not represent the views or opinions of Haddad & Sherwin LLP, nor should it be construed as a complete and accurate statement of the law or as legal advice.  For better information about this topic, please contact Haddad & Sherwin LLP.

All citizens have the right to have their dignity as well as their physical and psychological safety preserved at all times, including during arrest, trial, or conviction. Unfortunately, a growing number of individuals are experiencing excessive force by law enforcement (known otherwise as police brutality) and find themselves at a loss on how their rights can be restored.

In case you have experienced this situation or know someone who has, you should know what it legally entails and how to proceed.

What Exactly Is Excessive Force by Law Enforcement?

Any corrective measures that aim at deliberately and unduly causing harm to a civilian under police custody can be classified as excessive force by law enforcement (a.k.a. police brutality).

The cases include physical and psychological harassment or injury, verbal harassment, property damage, and even death. Excessive force by law enforcement in California like in other states can bring an officer to face a federal lawsuit and be criminally charged if evidence shows they’re guilty.

Excessive, malicious, and unnecessary measures to restore order or discipline can cause
significant harm to an individual, even to the point of permanent injury or death.

Sometimes citizens that have been subjected to police brutality are also left without medical attention after physical violence, which might lead to death. This constitutes a violation of basic human rights and the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.

What Can You Do If You’re a Victim of Excessive Force by Law Enforcement in California

You or a person you know can start a lawsuit against individual officers for use of excessive force to make sure your rights are respected and the offending officer or officers are punished.  Individuals, as well as the county may be sued in the process.

Filing for an excessive force by law enforcement lawsuit has a deadline (statute of limitations) of two years for federal lawsuits and six months for state law claims.

Take these deadlines into consideration and seek legal advice as soon as possible. Also, go through any other administrative procedures regulating excessive use of force by law enforcement before filing in court; otherwise, your case could be dismissed on the grounds of not complying with the Prison Litigation Reform Act.

Act Today on Excessive Force by Law Enforcement in California

Undue actions on citizens by law enforcement must be dealt with to discourage this type of misconduct from officers of any rank, and you are well within the exercise of your rights as a citizen to seek legal action. Look for the help of experienced attorneys to solve your excessive force by law enforcement case as soon as you can.

Haddad & Sherwin LLP has a long, successful track record winning wrongful death and other serious civil rights claims for police and jail officer misconduct, throughout Northern and Central California.  Call or email us for a free consultation.

This content about Excessive Force by Law Enforcement was written by a third party and does not represent the views or opinions of Haddad & Sherwin LLP, nor should it be construed as a complete and accurate statement of the law or as legal advice.  For better information about this topic, please contact Haddad & Sherwin LLP.