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Examples of Civil Rights Violations by Police Officers

In the case, DeShaney v. Winnebago County Dept. of Social Services, 489 U.S. 189, the Supreme Court ruled that police officers have no duty to protect citizens. Rather, they have a duty to protect citizens not from other citizens, but from the State. With this in mind, it’s easier to understand why there are so many reported incidents of police officers endangering and violating our civil rights as they claim to do their duty. These violations may include excessive use of force, false arrest, racial discrimination, or illegal search and seizure.

The effects of these civil rights violations can be devastating for victims. Not only is there the physical pain that comes from the excessive use of force, but there is also the emotional trauma that can follow them for life. In some cases, victims may also have their lives ruined due to false arrests and imprisonment for crimes they didn’t commit.

Victims of civil rights violations can find justice with the help of an experienced civil rights attorney. The attorneys at Bantle & Levy will investigate to build a strong argument in your defense and hold the police officer accountable for their actions. With the help of an attorney, victims can even seek compensation along with justice in court.

Examples of Civil Rights Violations by Police Officers

Some of these violations see crossover and can happen at the same time. Here are some examples of civil rights violations by police officers:

  1. False Arrest: This is when a police officer arrests an individual without probable cause or a valid warrant. They have violated the arrested person’s right to liberty and freedom from unreasonable seizures, as guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment.
  2. Malicious Prosecution: In this case, a police officer intentionally subjects a person to wrongful prosecution. This means they know there’s no reasonable ground to believe that the person they’re arresting committed the crime.
  3. Excessive Use of Force: This involves police officers using more force than necessary to control a situation or apprehend a suspect. It’s a violation of the Eighth Amendment, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment.
  4. Unreasonable Use of Force: This is similar to excessive use of force, but it refers specifically to situations where the level of force used was not justified given the circumstances. For example, shooting someone who has committed larceny, which is theft without the threat or use of violence, would be unreasonable use of force.
  5. Abuse of Power: This occurs when police officers use their position of authority to engage in illegal activities or to unfairly target certain individuals or groups. Common examples of this include hate crimes.
  6. Evidence Tampering or Coercion of Witnesses: This involves manipulation, alteration, or falsification of evidence by police officers. This violates a person’s right to a fair trial and due process.
  7. Unlawful Detention: This happens when a police officer detains an individual without a valid reason or without following the proper legal procedures. The difference between this and a false arrest is that detention doesn’t include the threat or promise of charges. An example would be holding someone in their police car without probable cause but with no intention of officially arresting them.
  8. Racial Profiling: This is a discriminatory practice where police officers target individuals for suspicion of crime based on the individual’s race or ethnicity. Officers who profile based on religious practices and clothing, or national origin are violating the same right as profiling based on race.
  9. Sexual Assault: This involves police officers using their power and authority to sexually harass, molest, or even assault others.
  10. Carrying Out Unlawful No-knock Warrants: This happens when the police carry out search warrants without knocking or announcing their presence first, especially when they do not have a court order allowing them to do so.
  11. Indiscriminate Use of Riot Control Agents at Protests: This involves police officers using tear gas, pepper spray, or other riot control agents indiscriminately during protests, potentially causing harm to peaceful protesters or bystanders.

What Recourse Do You Have?

Victims are not left defenseless. They may be eligible to receive monetary compensation from the police department or other organizations through civil rights lawsuits. This can help cover medical bills, lost wages, and other costs associated with the incident. Our attorneys are experienced in navigating this complex process. We will work hard to ensure that our clients receive the justice and compensation they deserve.

Victims of civil rights violations need to know that there are legal remedies available to them. They are not alone, they are not defenseless, and they do not have to be silent about what they have suffered. This can be a difficult process for victims, but having an experienced civil rights violation attorney on their side ensures that they receive the best possible outcome from their case.

Contact the Civil Rights Violation Attorneys at Bantle & Levy

No matter what type of civil rights violation they have suffered, victims can find justice with the help of an experienced attorney from Bantle & Levy. Our attorneys are dedicated to helping clients seek justice and compensation for the wrongs done to them. By understanding their rights and seeking legal counsel, victims can protect themselves from further violations and ensure that justice is served. If your rights have been violated by police officers, contact us today for help.

Bantle & Levy

Lee Bantle is a partner at Bantle & Levy LLP. He has extensive legal expertise, admitted to the bars of the U.S. District Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals. With a distinguished academic background and clerkship experience, he has been recognized as a top-rated civil rights attorney and esteemed lawyer. In addition to his successful career, he has actively contributed to various legal organizations and serves as a faculty member for NYU's Annual Workshop on Employment Law for Federal Judges.

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