Police Misconduct Cases in Virginia
Call Our Richmond Litigation Attorneys
There are various ways in which law enforcement officers may be liable
for injury or damages that they cause. Things such as the use of excessive
force, false arrest, and negligent or reckless driving are all potential
grounds for a claim. While most officers uphold their promise to serve
and protect, there are, unfortunately, many instances where police officers
violate citizens' civil rights.
The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees certain
rights, including the right to not be deprived of life, liberty, or property
without going through the legal system. These claims are often litigated
in Federal court under 42 U.S.C. §1983, which states that if a person
acting under color of state law violates your civil rights, he or she
may be liable and required to pay you damages. The Richmond civil litigation
attorneys at the
Halperin Law Center are experienceddefenders of civil rights and can fight to recover the monetary damages that you are rightfully due.
When a police officer uses more force than that which is necessary for
what he or she is authorized to do, they are deemed to be using "excessive
force," which can be a violation of a person's civil rights.
If the victim is injured as a result of the excessive force, the police
department may be required to
compensate them for damages. An officer may be violating someone's civil rights if he or she unnecessarily
assaults, causes harm, or fires his or her weapon at them.
For example, a police officer may be within his or her right to handcuff
a suspect who is under arrest; however, the suspect's constitutional
rights may be violated if the officer were to then point a weapon at an
unarmed and handcuffed individual. Whether or not there is a viable claim
for damages depends on the reason for the use of force, the intent or
goal of the officer, and whether or not they had the authority to proceed
with those goals.
Victims of police brutality may sustain injuries that cause them to incur
financial damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages. Federal and
State law may entitle them to compensation for pain and suffering, as
well as for the humiliation and embarrassment that the police officer's
misbehavior has caused that person in the form of punitive damages.
Wrongful & False Arrest
False arrest is defined as a police officer physically detaining someone
without the legal right to do so; therefore the validity of a false arrest
claim depends on what authority an officer has in that particular situation.
It is unlawful for you to be detained based solely on your race, gender,
religious beliefs, or sexual orientation. You may not be searched or arrested
unless the officer has a warrant or probable cause to assume that you
have committed an offense.
You are within your rights to remain silent if you are placed under arrest.
You have the right to have an attorney present when questioned. If you
feel that your civil rights were ignored and that you have been the victim
of an unlawful arrest, the Halperin Law Center may be able to help you
recover monetary damages.
Contact us to see if you are entitled to damages.
Reckless & Negligent Actions: High-Speed Pursuits
Law enforcement officers are fallible like any other human being. This
means that they may commit negligent, wrongful, or reckless acts. If you
watch the news, you certainly have seen video of high-speed pursuit pursuits.
High-speed chases are recognized as one of the more dangerous police tactics in use,
killing more innocent bystanders than police firearms.
Motor vehicle accidents that occur due to drivers fleeing police kill an
average of one person per day in the United States, including more than
150 innocent bystanders per year. In addition to those killed as a result
of high-speed pursuits, an average of two innocent bystanders per week
are killed a result of police cruisers responding to calls for service.
Common injuries that occur include:
These injuries can result staggering medical bills and lost wages, as well
as the physical and emotional pain and suffering.
Most people recognize and agree that police pursuit is necessary in some
instances, particularly when violent crimes are involved. Proper policies,
training and implementation can reduce the number of unnecessary pursuits,
thereby reducing the number of fatalities and injuries.
There are a myriad of factors to consider when examining whether an officer's
decision was negligent.
Read about Attorney Jonathan Halperin's
$6 million jury verdict against the District of Columbia resulting from the deaths of an eight-year-old boy and his aunt in a high-speed
police pursuit. This decision was affirmed by the D.C. Court of Appeals.
Let Our Firm Advocate for Your Rights
A Richmond attorney who has experience with police misconduct cases can
analyze your case and determine if the policies and procedures involved
in your situation were violated in any way. Halperin Law Center is here
to guide you through this difficult and complicated process to seek just
compensation for your harms and losses.
If you think that you or a loved one has been the victim of police misconduct
or negligence, resulting in injuries, death, or a violation of civil rights,
call the Halperin Law Center at (804) 220-0223.