California – February 6, 2021

The California Department of Justice revealed staggering 2017 statistics to include police officer-involved fatalities to Californians, where more than two-thirds were persons of color, and of those individuals that were unarmed, three-fourths were persons of color.  The Anaheim Police Department was cited in a 2017 report by the ACLU and ranked 9th among the 60 largest cities in 2015, due to deaths during arrests where officers were involved, and the rate of police involved deaths per million beat out San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Boston and Atlanta in 2016. Victims of police brutality have the right to make a complaint with the Anaheim Police Department, and initiate legal defense actions when warranted.

Anaheim Police Department Policy.

The Anaheim Police Department has spoken to the concerns of California law makers through changes in policy that adapt mandatory de-escalation training techniques.  The Department’s “use of force” policy dictates that officers may use reasonable force when carrying out their duties, but must have an understanding for their authority and limitations, especially with regard to overcoming resistance during an encounter, and maintaining respect for human life and dignity without prejudice.  Officers who are reported for excessive force will be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer’s use of force at the time of the incident.  These actions will impact litigation initiated by a brutality victim.  A police brutality attorney in Anaheim can explain how actions by a police officer are important to case building.

Mandated police force training.

The State of California, through the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training, has mandated de-escalation training for its police departments for two hours every two years.  In addition to the de-escalation training, 24 total hours of other required training every two years in areas such as arrest and control, driving, firearms and force options simulations are required along with courses in domestic violence and CPR every two years, and racial profiling/racial diversity every five years.  Experienced personal injury attorneys can be instrumental in utilizing the failure to comply with department mandates in support of negligent acts for owed duty of care.

Transparency. 

A California law that took effect January 1, 2019 allows public access to police records in use-of-force cases.  Senate Bill 1421 requires the availability to the public of “any record relating to an incident in which a sustained finding was made by any law enforcement agency, or oversight agency of dishonesty by a peace officer or custodial officer directly relating to the reporting, investigation, or prosecution of a crime, or directly relating to the reporting of, or investigation of misconduct by, another peace officer or custodial officer, including, but not limited to, any sustained finding of perjury, false statements, filing false reports, destruction, falsifying, or concealing of evidence.”  California was the only state that locked internal investigations of citizen complaints away from the public, until this new law.   Victims of police brutality can sue for abuse and any information they can secure through their own, or legal counsel’s resources may be relevant to a winning case.

Legal recourse.

An experienced police brutality lawyer can lay the groundwork for a successful lawsuit against a police officer who was breaking the law.  There are various federal and state laws including the First, Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments, Title 6 of the Civil Rights Act, Title 42 United States Code, Americans with Disabilities Act, California Penal Code 422.6 to name a few, that insure remedy to individuals who have suffered the negative effects of police brutality.

Damages.

Damages may include hospital/medical expenses; past and future permanent disability payments; emotional distress including depression and anxiety; loss of enjoyment of life; physical pain and suffering; and loss of love and companionship due to a death or serious injury caused by police brutality through excessive force.

Sources:

https://www.anaheim.net/FormCenter/Police-Department-13/Customer-Service-Personnel-Complaint-Eng-84

https://codes.findlaw.com/ca/penal-code/pen-sect-422-6.html

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/amendmentxiv

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/fourth_amendment

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment

http://govred.com/blog/deescalation-training-state-requirements/

https://action.aclu.org/send-message/ca-asm-deadly-use-of-force?ms_aff=CN&initms_aff=CN&ms_chan=eml&initms_chan=eml

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2841872

https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-aclu-anaheim-police-report-20171120-story.html