Maryland – February 5, 2021

When police officers develop positive relationships and are perceived as professional, caring, and fair to all, regardless of race, gender or religion, officers and communities will benefit through mutual respect and trust. Positive interaction fosters a climate where law enforcement personnel can confidently perform their duties, knowing that they have community support. Excessive force and frequent firearm’s use negatively impact relationships between police and the communities they serve.  When individuals believe they have been harmed at the hands of law enforcement, they should consult with a Maryland police brutality attorney.

Community trust building needed.

Police practices that include bias are problematic for a much needed building of trust in Baltimore Maryland neighborhoods. Implicit bias influences relationships between law enforcement and communities with a high minority presence, and studies show that this may be one factor that lead police to shoot more unarmed black suspects than white, and a reason why minority members are stopped more often by police. Police are dependent on community interaction to locate and arrest criminals, and if citizens do not trust police, an avenue toward safety has been reduced.

Bias-based profiling.

Profiling occurs when misguided police officers overstep their authoritative boundaries by seeking out individuals based solely on preconceived prejudicial judgments due to race, religion, sexual orientation, or economic status and violate their civil rights. Police acting on their implicit bias are those law enforcement individuals who automatically associate stereotypes to certain groups, allowing that to influence their behavior and respond in biased ways that may be exhibited in the use of extensive force.  Police departments are undergoing changes to address police behavior through de-escalation training and implicit bias training in Maryland toward the reduction of excessive force personal injuries and death.  Consultation with legal professionals regarding harms caused by bias-based profiling can yield some relief for victims.

De-escalation training is mandatory in Maryland.

The State of Maryland requires de-escalation training for their police officers and individual departments are accountable to the Police Training Commission for verification that these trainings occur.  De-escalation training is one mechanism to decrease the instances of excessive force used in the field. Officers should make efforts to listen respectfully, control crowds, be courteous in hopes a criminal will follow suit, refrain from aggressive body language and offensive speech, and be swift in actions to diffuse the situation at hand without causing public humiliation.

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. Personal injury attorneys can outline the differences between compensatory and punitive damages and inform victims of the possibility for a successful financial award to cover losses.

Consult with an attorney.

There are federal and state laws that insure remedy to individuals who have suffered the negative effects of police brutality.  Individuals who have been victimized and suffered injury through bias-based profiling and/or excessive force by a police officer in Baltimore should seek professional counsel to see if there is an actionable case for damages.

Sources:

https://govt.westlaw.com/mdc/Document/N7B0266E0A64911DBB5DDAC3692B918BC?contextData=%28sc.Default%29&transitionType=Default

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

https://trustandjustice.org/resources/intervention/implicit-bias