Most civil cases against a police officer involve their misconduct. This is when a persons’ civil liberties are violated by an officers actions
Living in a democratic society means that no one or entity should be held above the law. This includes those who are commissioned to uphold it. While police officers have a duty to protect and serve the citizens of Nevada, they also have a duty to also obey laws.
It could be by the use of excessive force or an intentional false arrest. Just the act of being arrested under false pretenses is not enough to bring a civil action against the officer. You have to show that his intent was malicious and that he arrested you knowing that you were not guilty.
It is the requirement in most states that a plaintiff follow certain procedural processes before a civil claim is filed. A personal injury attorney will help walk you through it, but you should know that you may be required to try and solve the dispute with administrative remedies first. This would entail reporting the incident to the police department internal affairs or the department of justice.
Besides their conduct, police officers are also held to a hand standard when dealing with suspects in the proximity of innocent bystanders. High speed chases that resulted in multiple accidents and casualties have caused most states to reevaluate these procedures and change the way a police pursuit is conducted.
One of the most significant changes was that the pursuit end when the suspect vehicle was no longer in sight.
In addition, lights and sirens must always be in operation and care taken when crossing intersections. A young St. Louis woman was severely injured in a crash when a police car in high pursuit that had disregarded traffic signals. It was also shown that the car in question had long been gone from their sights. A jury trial ensued for the woman who wished to recover her financial damages. They awarded her $500,000 to cover her $8,000 medical expenses plus her lost time from work and pain and suffering.
There are certain complications found in these types of cases that are not present in other civil lawsuits.
For example, your personal injury attorney may direct you to seek compensation from the officer’s superior or even the municipality he works for. Plus, besides the actual and punitive damages that you can pursue, you can also ask for civil rights damages if yours were violated.