Today, police brutality is a hot topic in the state of Alabama. There is growing concern that the professionals we trust to uphold the law may be acting in an irresponsible and unsafe manner towards citizens. This topic is extremely controversial in nature, and there are extremely strong opinions on both sides of the issue. With all that said, Alabama does have strict laws that prohibit police brutality, and officers who break these laws are punished accordingly.
As lawmakers in Alabama consider how to address this issue, it’s important to understand your rights as a citizen in the Cotton State. What constitutes police brutality? What are your legal options if you have suffered unfair or excessive treatment from a police officer? Today, the Alabama government is altering the way it trains and tracks police officers in order to prevent these tragedies from occurring. In addition, the legal system itself represents one of the most reliable checks and balances for police brutality in Alabama.
Examples of Police Brutality in Alabama
So what does police brutality actually look like in Alabama? Also known as “police misconduct” or “excessive force,” police brutality can take many forms. Here are some examples of what might constitute police brutality:
- Being pressured or forced to confess to a crime that you didn’t commit
- Searching you without a justifiable reason
- Being overly aggressive towards you and causing you injuries, even when you aren’t fighting back
- Shooting you without a justifiable reason
- Standing by and watching without intervening while you’re in a dangerous situation
- Tasering you excessively or without a justifiable reason
- Arresting you for a crime you didn’t commit
To some extent, police officers are protected by something called qualified immunity. This degree of protection extends to a range of government officials and prevents them from being held liable for constitutional violations. In some cases, qualified immunity may protect police officers in Alabama from lawsuits involving excessive force. However, this legal protection only goes so far. Individuals can still be held liable for injuries if they violated “clearly established” law.
Proving Police Brutality in Alabama
If you have suffered from police brutality in Alabama, one of the most notable challenges is proving negligence or excessive force by specific police officers. Fortunately, many police officers across in cities like Adamsville now wear bodycams that record footage of all their actions. In addition, police cars usually have dashboard cams that record potentially important evidence.
A qualified attorney can help you collect this evidence and show the court why a police officer’s actions might constitute police brutality. If no video evidence is available, an experienced civil rights lawyer can still use a range of different strategies and other forms of evidence to help you gain compensation – even if the defendant’s criminal defense attorney is quite proficient.
If you are successful in proving that you were the victim of police brutality in Alabama, you will likely receive compensation for your injuries. This includes the cost of medical bills, loss of wages, and emotional suffering such as PTSD, trauma, and anxiety.