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When is Police Misconduct Legally Actionable in Louisiana?

— July 8, 2022

Some officers may go so far as to commit criminal acts that affect citizens while on duty.

New Orleans, LA – While police are engaged in their job duties, it is possible that they seriously mistreat a person or injure them during an encounter. If the victim can identify some kind of specific losses that were caused by illegal police action, then they can file a lawsuit. This usually comes in the form of physical injuries associated with police brutality, but things like false arrests can deprive a person of their time and freedom as well. Those who have had problematic interactions with the police can contact an attorney in Louisiana and see if they need to file a lawsuit. 

Physical injuries due to police brutality

Police officers are allowed to use some level of force to do things like protect people in the area of an active crime scene, make arrests, and detain suspects. However, these interactions are governed by use of force protocols, and officers receive special training regarding how they can apply force appropriately. Unfortunately, in practice some officers will become violent during these times and they can end up seriously hurting or even killing suspects. Police have weapons such as guns and pepper spray that can be dangerous, and they also may strike suspects who are already detained and pose no further threat. After an injury, the victim can file a lawsuit to be compensated for the costs of medical treatment, as well as other problems that were caused by the actions of the officer in question.

Illegal detentions and false arrests

Handcuffs with key on a fingerprint sheet; image by Bill Oxford, via
Handcuffs with key on a fingerprint sheet; image by Bill Oxford, via

If someone is illegally detained and arrested by a police officer, they may lose employment, experience damage to their reputation, and other kinds of losses due to the deprivation of their civil rights. There are various laws which create a cause of action for anyone who has become a victim of an abuse of authority by the government. These laws have often been used in cases of police misconduct and illegal arrests. Unfortunately, major cities such as New Orleans have a large number of interactions between officers and the public, and some of these encounters will result in unnecessary or illegal arrests. 

Crimes committed by officers

Some officers may go so far as to commit criminal acts that affect citizens while on duty. This can include sexual assault against a suspect, fraud involving insurance or other documents, use of law enforcement resources to carry out personal vendettas, and any other actions that can result in officers being prosecuted. In many of these situations, after the illegal behavior is discovered the officer may face both termination from their position as well as lawsuits.

More information about suing a local police department is a web directory that helps people find the right kind of legal help. Anyone who needs to meet with a lawyer who focuses on police brutality in Louisiana can schedule a consultation.

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