Although the police are usually given the benefit of the doubt when performing their duties this does not mean that everything they do is justified. Police officers are people first and as a result are susceptible to the same negative influences and biases as any other individual. With that in mind, it is more than likely that abuses between the police and the citizenry will occur. If you believe you’ve been a victim of police misconduct then there may be a way to vindicate your rights and prevent future misconduct.
If you’ve been arrested without a legitimate reason than there is a good chance that the police are liable to you for false arrest. In order to prove such a claim, a person would have to prove that no probable cause existed for their arrest, but the police arrested them anyways. Probable cause is a legal standard that is used to determine the probability that a crime had been committed by analyzing the facts behind the alleged crime. If the facts would lead a reasonable person to believe the crime has been committed by the suspect then probable cause is established.
Malicious Prosecution can most easily be described as a False Arrest that was pursued with particular malice for the alleged defendant. If probable cause did not exist for the arrest, but an officer of the Commonwealth continued the litigation for their own malicious purposes then they may be liable for malicious prosecution.
Otherwise known as Police Brutality, Excessive Force occurs when an officer uses unreasonable force against an individual. These types of claims examine the surrounding facts and circumstances in determining whether the officer’s use of force was reasonable.
What to do if you’ve been a victim…
One of the most important things you can do in these types of cases is document what occurred. Take photographs of injuries, have a doctor examine injuries to create a medical records of the abuse and write down what happened while its fresh in your mind so you don’t forget later.