Some cases of police abusing their authority are clearly captured on video and show an extreme level of misconduct. These factors tend to make the value of the case increase, as there is little the department can do to explain away such inappropriate behavior. However, there are also other types of evidence that can help.
A lawsuit involving a man beaten by officers in Mississippi at a traffic roadblock is asking for $1 million in damages.
Man beaten at traffic roadblock in Mississippi
The incident occurred in Water Valley, which is north of Jackson. The police were operating a roadblock to look for traffic violations when the beating occurred. The officers at the scene said they discovered that the victim had a suspended driver’s license during a routine stop. The situation escalated when they used force to detain him to try to stop him from fleeing the area. The local sheriff claims that the victim appeared to be on drugs and tried to tackle the officers during their initial interaction before they acted in self defense.
The victim’s attorney denies their version of the story and says his client was brutally beaten by the officers’ flashlights. The victim was also shot with a stun gun during the altercation. There are allegations that the beating was racially motivated and may have involved profiling, as the officers were white and the victim was black.
The best evidence
Most high profile cases of police brutality have involved a victim who was clearly attacked by multiple officers on video. This usually results in lots of negative publicity and media attention for the department, and it puts pressure on the city and local politicians to pay the victim through a settlement in order to make the case go away. A department can usually save money on legal fees and other related costs by settling the case quickly rather than taking it to trial and risking larger losses.
How does this help other victims?
As a general rule, it is always helpful to have some kind of clear, unequivocal evidence that police violated their use of force protocols. While police will claim in many situations that they needed to stop a suspect from fleeing or acted in self defense, when a helpless victim is already detained or subdued and continually beaten by multiple officers, these justifications tend to not work.
Civil rights lawsuits and the use of force
Police are only allowed to use enough force to secure the immediate area, protect themselves, and make an arrest. If they use any additional or unnecessary force to beat suspects, this can become the grounds for a civil rights lawsuit. There are relevant federal laws that say no government agent or employee can deprive a person of their rights while acting in their official capacity, whether through violence or any other misuse of their authority.
Speak with an experienced police brutality attorney
To get help from a specialist attorney in Jackson, or anywhere nearby in Mississippi, contact Williams Newman Williams for a free consultation. They are experienced trial attorneys who have recovered millions of dollars worth of damages for their clients.