While most of us respect our nation’s law enforcement for putting their lives at risk to maintain the order of society each day, we still have our lines in the sand. When this line is crossed, there is usually a legal route to justice under the United States constitution.
If you’ve been the victim of police brutality in the state of Indiana, contact an experienced Indiana police brutality attorney right away to see what your options are.
What is police brutality?
Police brutality is a type of police misconduct that uses an excessive or unnecessary use of force to subdue a citizen. Sometimes defining “unnecessary” is difficult, but the constitution provides us with some guidance.
The United States constitution prohibits police brutality in a number of ways; First, the 4th Amendment protects all citizens from unwarranted search and seizures, meaning police officers need either a warrant or probable cause to search your premises or seize you or your belongings.
The 8th Amendment protects all citizens from cruel and unusual punishment, and the 14th Amendment grants us due process and humane treatment if arrested or convicted of a crime.
Sometimes police brutality can be easier to point out, such as in the situations of:
- Wrongful death
- Unnecessary personal injury
- Wrongful Arrest
- Wrongful use of taser or gun
- Sexual abuse
Under Indiana law, the maximum amount you can claim in damages is $700,000. However, under federal laws, there is no maximum amount of damages you can claim.
Compensation can come in the form of:
- Medical expenses
- Punitive damages like pain and suffering etc.
- Wrongful death
- Loss of wages
- Damage to reputation
Since so much of a police brutality settlement hinges on proving that force was “unreasonable,” having an experienced attorney is truly imperative in these situations. Many situations can prove to be subjective or a grey area, so picking the right angle in your claim is crucial.
An example of a case where police officers’ use of force was considered justified by the courts was when 19-year old McHale Rose was shot and killed by law enforcement in Indianapolis, and then it was determined that he falsely reported a burglary, and then shot at police with an AK-47 when they arrived.
Indiana grants more rights to citizens when it comes to police brutality perhaps more than any other state. In 2012, the “right to resist police” law was signed into existence which allows people to shoot at the police if they are unlawfully entering their premises. These situations are rare and as the governor noted at the time, it’s definitely not an invitation to shoot police, so don’t try it.
Were you the victim of police brutality in Indiana?
Whether you’re in Indianapolis or Fort Wayne, qualified attorneys are ready to get you the compensation you deserve.