Police officers carry the very important responsibility of making sure they are doing their best to keep the streets safe from crime. Since police officers carry such a protecting role in society they often have to face very severe penalties if they end up breaking this trust and abusing their authority
Police officers act under color of law and that essentially means that all of their actions are representing the government and the law. If they abuse their authority and end up committing crimes while acting under color of law then they most definitely have to suffer the penalties.
What is the penalty for violating civil rights while acting under color of law?
If a police officer violates anyone’s civil rights then they will have to pay a maximum of $250,000 in compensation and up to ten years of jail time. Clearly, depriving a person of their rights when the officer was supposed to be protecting them is a major crime. The reason why the crime is taken so seriously is because of the trust that is broken between the law and the general public and also between the offending officer and the police department.
Police officer in Des Moines convicted for breaking an arrestees’ nose
On February 19,2013 a man was being arrested by three police officers when a fourth officer by the name of Collin Boone ran up to the arrestee and kicked him the face. This kick resulted in the victim breaking his teeth and his nose.
The arrestee had been compliant and had actually been laying face down on the floor and was not threatening anyone at all when Boone attacked him. When video footage and police witnesses reported what happened, Boone was deservingly dismissed from his position and was convicted as a criminal by the Department of Justice.
What should I do if I see a police officer commuting a civil rights violation?
Anyone who sees an officer acting up or an officer who is using excessive force against a helpless victim should reach out to a police brutality attorney in Des Moines, IA as soon as possible. An attorney is the ideal professional to contact because they can inform a person of all of the legalities involved and can help a person make the complaints to the right authority figures.
If a person attempts to file a complaint themselves then they risk the chance of forgetting to include vital information. They also risk giving away too much information which could potentially be used against them if the matter escalates to a court trial. If a person committed a crime and they were abused by an officer during arrest then they have every right to speak out against how their rights have been violated.
The work of a police officer is highly based on trust and if the trust is broken between law enforcement officers and the general public then the entire structure of society could suffer. Anyone who has been harassed by an officer should contact a legal professional so that they can take action and help reduce the amount of police brutality that is occurring in Des Moines, IA.