If you or a loved one suffered injuries as a result of police brutality, you may have the right to pursue a lawsuit against police officers or the police department. The Law Offices of Oscar Syger are police brutality lawyers in Boca Raton, Florida who may be able to help you and your family seek damages if you or a loved one has been hurt due to police brutality. Organizations like the ACLU have reported on the ways that police brutality has impacted communities across the country, particularly communities of color. Police brutality is also known as police excessive force. Police officers are given wide discretion in the amount of force that they deem reasonable to prevent harm to the officer and harm to the general public. Police are also permitted to use a reasonable amount of force to detain a suspect. Generally, police should use the least amount of force required to subdue a suspect and keep themselves and the general public safe. However, sometimes police use more force than is necessary. Unfortunately, when excessive force has been used, it is often the responsibility of the family or the victim to prove to the courts that police committed wrongdoing. When individuals suffer injuries during arrest, the question of whether police used excessive force should always be asked. What are some injuries individuals can face when police use excessive force?
- Police are permitted to shoot suspects if they believe the suspect may pose an imminent danger to the officer or to the general public. Police may also shoot if they believe a dangerous suspect might flee the scene of a crime or might otherwise get away. However, if you or a loved one were injured by a police shooting, you may have the right to seek compensation for these injuries if police were not justified in shooting. Shooting a fleeing suspect who is not dangerous may be considered excessive, as might shooting a suspect when the suspect posed no immediate danger, such as when a person reaches in their glove compartment to provide registration information, but an officer overreacts and shoots. Wounds from shooting injuries can require emergency medical care, a long rehabilitation period, and may even result in permanent disability. Shootings can result in traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, internal injuries, loss of blood, broken bones, and other damage. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a police shooting, you may have the right to seek damages from the police department or from the police officer. Contact the Law Offices of Oscar Syger, police brutality lawyers in Boca Raton, Florida today to learn more.
- Taser Injuries. When police use tasers as an alternative to shootings, individuals can still suffer serious injuries. Tasers essentially subdue individuals by giving them an electrical shock. The shock isn’t meant to kill, but it can cause injury. Minor taser injuries can include burns on the skin. The biggest risk with taser use is the risk of neurological complication. While these complications are rare, some individuals can lose consciousness, experience confusion, or experience changes in brain activity. The risk is higher if the taser is used on a person’s head. If you believe a taser injury has led to brain damage or neurological changes, you may have the right to seek damages for your losses and medical costs. Police departments should train officers on the proper use of a taser, and should check that tasers are properly calibrated.
- Pepper Spray. While pepper spray use rarely causes serious injuries, it can cause asphyxiation and injuries to those who are allergic and to those who have asthma. If you or a loved one had to be hospitalized as a result of getting pepper sprayed, you may be facing high emergency room bills and other issues. Contact the Law Offices of Oscar Syger today to learn more about your options and rights.
- Police may sometimes hit suspects to subdue them. While physical force is generally a better alternative than a shooting or the use of a taser, sometimes physical force can cause major injuries, including traumatic brain injury, broken bones, and internal injuries. If you or a loved one suffered a serious injury as a result of a police beating, you may have the right to seek damages under the law if police used excessive force. The Law Offices of Oscar Syger are police brutality lawyers in Boca Raton, Florida who can review the circumstances of your arrest, the circumstances in which your police beating took place, and can help you understand your rights and options under the law.
- Police Sexual Assault. According to CNN, police have faced approximately 400 rape charges between 2005 and 2013. Instances of fondling and inappropriate touching are more commonly reported. When police arrest individuals, they are often put in a position of power. When police abuse this power by assaulting individuals or fondling suspects, victims and families may have the right to fight back. Injuries from sexual assault can include PTSD, STDs, and some individuals can end up pregnant.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Police excessive force can be incredibly traumatizing. When police use excessive force, the very organization that we entrust as a society to protect us, causes us harm. Police shootings, taser injuries, beatings, and sexual assault can leave some victims suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. If you were falsely arrested or falsely imprisoned, this can also be incredibly traumatic. If you are experiencing flashbacks, have trouble sleeping, or find yourself avoiding certain circumstances and situations because of your encounter with police, the Law Offices of Oscar Syger are police brutality lawyers in Boca Raton, Florida who may be able to help you.
These are just some of the injuries that individuals can face when police use excessive force. Police brutality lawsuits can be more complicated than lawsuits involving civilians because the government is often protected under a concept known as sovereign immunity. It can be incredibly helpful to have a lawyer help you navigate the lawsuit process when police abuse their power. You may only have a limited amount of time to take action for your police brutality injuries. Contact the Law Offices of Oscar Syger today to learn more.