If a Colorado police officer arrested an individual without probable cause or reason to believe a crime was being committed, but instead did so because of their race or ethnicity, the individual may have the right to file a civil lawsuit for being falsely arrested. There are two amendments in the U.S. Constitution that protect an individual from being falsely arrested. These include the Fourth Amendment and the Fourteenth Amendment.
How the Fourth Amendment Protects Individuals from Being Falsely Arrested
According to the Fourth Amendment, police officers in Colorado are permitted to stop an individual whom they deem suspicious and “make reasonable inquiries” to determine if the officer’s suspicions are accurate. An officer cannot use an individual’s race or ethnicity as their basis for stopping an individual. If an officer does stop someone for this reason and makes an arrest without first having probable cause to do so, the individual can fight the charges and file a civil lawsuit for being falsely arrested.
The Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects individuals from unreasonable searches and seizures and if this right is violated, an individual can hire a Colorado police brutality lawyer who can help them file a civil suit in an effort to recover damages.
What is the Fourteenth Amendment and how does it protect Colorado residents from being falsely arrested?
The Fourteenth Amendment “prohibits states from depriving any person of “life, liberty, or property, without due process of law” and from denying anyone within a state’s jurisdiction equal protection under the law.” Essentially, what this means is that the Fourteenth Amendment provides individuals with “equal protection of the laws” [Source: History.com]. Because the law prohibits police officers from using a person’s race, religion, gender, etc. as their basis for making an arrest rather than having probable cause, if the officer violates a law to make an arrest, they would be protected by the Fourteenth Amendment if they were falsely arrested.
What are the benefits of filing a civil lawsuit against an officer or police department after being falsely arrested in Colorado?
Aside from recognizing an officer of the law or a police department for making a false arrest, a civil lawsuit would also give an individual the opportunity to request damages. Damages, or financial relief, may be awarded to a victim for the following:
- Lost income if the false arrest led to an individual being unable to work.
- Mental anguish
- Injures, if the officer became violent toward the individual during the arrest.
If an individual was falsely arrested in Denver or any other city in the State of Colorado, they should contact Bryan & Terrill Law, PLLC to find out if they have the grounds to file a civil lawsuit against the arresting officer or even the police department. In the event they do, the Colorado police misconduct lawyers at Bryan & Terrill Law, PLLC can assess their damages to determine what they should be awarded.
Bryan & Terrill Law, PLLC can be reached at:
333 W. Hampden Avenue, #420B
Englewood, CO 80110