The police have a thankless job, but there are standards of treatment that they must live up to. In certain instances, clear cases of mistreatment could be the reason for you or a loved one to receive compensation for the harm that you have suffered. A Smyrna police brutality lawyer may be able to represent you if you have been mistreated at the hands of law enforcement.
Call The Cochran Firm – Nashville today at (615) 651-7451 for a free consultation about how an attorney could help you seek any compensation that you are entitled to.
The Standard for Good Policing
There may be misconceptions about what police are allowed to do, and what crosses the line into mistreatment. Though a specific officer, department, or other manifestation of law enforcement may have good intentions (or may not), there are certain lines that cannot be crossed at the risk of violating your rights.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) defines several “principles of good policing”, which govern the standards that police officers and their bosses must be held to. These standards include:
- Knowing the role of police in the community
- Establishing a culture of respect and community involvement
- Implementing clear, consistent standards
- Having clear goals by which to measure the effectiveness of a department
- Having a framework for evaluating individual officer performance
- Emphasizing the importance of preserving human life when at all possible
- Emphasizing the importance of professionalism in all aspects of policing
- Enforcing consistent consequences for those who do not live up to good policing standards
It becomes all the more important to have clear strategies, goals, practices, and consequences when you consider the possible consequences of poor policing. An officer may be undone by the failures of superiors, such as if they were not adequately trained or held accountable. Multiple parties could also be responsible if you or a loved one were mistreated by one or more law enforcement officials.
Possible Forms of Police Mistreatment
Police officers must:
- Serve the community
- Safeguard lives and property
- Protect those acting peacefully
- Not violate the Constitutional rights of any individual
The violation of Constitutional rights may be at the heart of any lawsuit that you bring. Some forms of police brutality may include:
- Beating somebody
- Shooting or killing somebody through other means without justification
- Acts that qualify as torture
- Unnecessary use of force
Mistreatment by law enforcement is not resigned to acts that involve force, however. Some other reasons why you may choose to bring a lawsuit against an agent of law enforcement include:
- You believe that you were unlawfully detained or arrested
- You believe that race was a factor in being detained or arrested
- You were mistreated verbally
- You felt intimidated
- You were not permitted to speak with a lawyer
- You believe that you or your property were unlawfully searched
- You believe that evidence was tampered with or falsified
If you believe that your rights were violated during an interaction with law enforcement officials, then you may be entitled to receive compensation. A Smyrna police brutality lawyer may hear your case and represent you if a lawsuit is warranted. Call The Cochran Firm – Nashville at (615) 651-7451 to learn more.
For a free legal consultation with a police brutality lawyer serving Smyrna, call 615-678-6278
There Must Be Accountability in Policing
Accountability is an important aspect of any profession, and the high stakes that exist with policing mean that there must be consequences for officer misconduct. Several
different entities could be responsible for a case of mistreatment, including:
- A specific law enforcement official who perpetrated one or more acts of mistreatment
- The direct superior of the offending officer
- An entire police department
- A municipality that oversees the operation of a police department under which mistreatment occurred
- An administrative worker who contributed to falsifying, destroying, or “losing” documentation
Interactions with law enforcement may be complex. A lawyer may be able to help you get to the heart of legal matters in your case. They may review the specific details of your police interaction and determine if, in their opinion, your rights were violated and whether you have grounds for a lawsuit.
The Possible Benefits of a Lawyer
A lawyer may be familiar with the legal aspects of lawsuits involving police brutality or other forms of law enforcement wrongdoing. The American Bar Association (ABA) notes that law enforcement agencies and agents could be responsible for wrongdoing in how they:
- Obtain evidence
- Handle complaints against officers
- Operate administratively
- Investigate crimes
- Use force
- Enact policing policy
A lawyer may be able to pinpoint precisely how your rights have been violated from a legal perspective. They may cite specific legal statutes and rules within your lawsuit seeking compensation. In addition to identifying specific ways that your rights were not honored, your lawyer may:
- Obtain any evidence, such as body camera footage, that details your interaction with law enforcement
- Determine all of the parties responsible for mistreatment
- Interview witnesses and record their accounts
- Document any injuries that you have suffered
- Identify and calculate the value of any harm that you have suffered
- File and complete your lawsuit
- Make in-person appearances on your behalf
- Negotiate a settlement or complete a trial
Your lawyer wants to defend your rights throughout the legal process. If they are successful, you may obtain compensation for trauma, medical expenses, and any other negative consequences that you have experienced because of wrongdoing by law enforcement agents.
Smyrna Police Brutality Lawyer Near Me 615-678-6278
Call The Cochran Firm – Nashville Today
The police are always accountable for their actions, but you may need to go to civil court in order to obtain justice for a negative interaction with law enforcement. Call The Cochran Firm – Nashville today at (615) 651-7451 to find out how a Smyrna police brutality lawyer may handle your lawsuit.