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Police Misconduct

POLICE MISCONDUCT (FALSE ARREST, EXCESSIVE FORCE) EXPLAINED BY AN ALBUQUERQUE CIVIL RIGHTS LAWYER

Albuquerque civil rights lawyer

Abuse of authority by police happens more often than many people realize. When it occurs, juries are often skeptical of the claim, wanting to believe that police officers always tell the truth. Police testimony and reports must be thoroughly investigated by experienced defense investigators in cases where misconduct is suspected, in order to unearth evidence that will be determinative. This is often physical evidence. If you feel you are a victim of police misconduct, our Albuquerque civil rights lawyer can protect your rights!

WHAT IS POLICE MISCONDUCT?

Police misconduct is a broad term that includes any violation of constitutional rights by a law enforcement officer.  It may include, among other illegal conduct, false arrest or excessive force.

WHAT IS FALSE ARREST?

False arrest is an arrest made without a warrant or probable cause.  It is a form of false imprisonment conducted by a party who claims to have the authority to make the arrest, such as a police officer.  Both federal and state laws protect people from false arrest, including the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

WHAT CONSTITUTES FALSE ARREST?

False arrest occurs when:

  • The arresting person used force or show of authority to restrain the victim.
  • The victim believed s/he was not free to leave.
  • The arresting person intentionally confined or restrained the victim’s freedom of movement without probable cause.

Probable cause is a legal term used to describe a state of facts that lead a reasonable person to conclude that a crime has been committed.  For example, say that during a routine traffic stop, a police officer sees illegal drugs sitting on the dashboard in plain view.  The officer has probable cause to arrest the person without a warrant for possession of illegal drugs.  However, Albuquerque civil rights lawyer may argue that the officer lacks probable cause if the victim told the officer that the bag contained salt and the officer taste tested it, confirming that the substance was, in fact, salt. Most cases have more complex fact patterns.

WHAT’S NEXT?

A person has three years from the false arrest to bring a civil suit against the arresting party.  A skilled Albuquerque civil rights lawyer will thoroughly conduct an investigation to show that a false arrest occurred.

Finding a Top Rated Albuquerque Civil Rights Lawyer

For more information, contact an Albuquerque civil rights lawyer with Twohig Law Firm at (505) 898-0400.

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