Most people are aware and mindful of the significant and sometimes difficult role police officers perform in our communities, and most would concur that the vast majority of officers are truly committed to protecting and respecting the neighborhoods they deserve. But as with anything else, there can be and there are exceptions that illustrate a lack of empathy and duty from certain police officers. These cops can generate great harm in the communities they are supposed to serve, especially if not held accountable. This is why victims of police brutality in Alaska are encouraged to meet with a police brutality attorney to help them prepare an unremitting case that can withstand the tests of a court of law.
What are the Complications Linked to Suing a Police Officer?
In the United States of America, suing a police officer comes with a unique set of challenges. Most notable among these are the legal protections afforded to cops, that make it inherently difficult to charge, much less convict any one of them in a court of law. The most consequential of these protections is the “judicial doctrine” of ‘qualified immunity’, which according to the American Bar Association , was “created by the Supreme Court [to] shield state actors from liability for their misconduct, even when they break the law. Under this doctrine, government agents — including but not limited to police officers — can never be sued for violating someone’s civil rights, unless they violated “clearly established law…In other words, it is entirely possible — and quite common — for courts to hold that government agents did violate someone’s rights, but that the victim has no legal remedy, simply because that precise sort of misconduct had not occurred in past cases.”
Suing for Police Brutality with the Help of an Experienced and Knowledgeable Attorney
While there are clearly some challenges linked to police brutality lawsuits, having access to an attorney who is familiar with police brutality case law, and can find precedents that will help you construct a case that the courts can consider, is essential. In addition to helping you sue specific police officers through “clearly established law”, a police brutality attorney can also make use of other legal strategies and or precedents such as “Monell v. Department of Social Services of the City of New York”, which according to the United States Commission on Civil Rights, “made it possible for victims of police misconduct to sue police departments and impose liability on the municipalities themselves for the actions of their employees.”
If you or someone you know has recently lived through an incident of police brutality, it is highly recommended that you reach out to a skilled and seasoned police brutality attorney in Biorka, Alaska who can brief you on compelling legal pathways to pursue.