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Manhattan Excessive Force

In the last few years, excessive force by police officers has received a significant amount of media attention because of incidents that have been captured on video. However, what is captured on video and what makes the news is a very small percentage of the actual incidence of excessive force. Each year, thousands of misconduct complaints are filed. Many of the complaints allege use of excessive force. When police use excessive force, the result can be serious physical injury, psychological damage, and wrongful death. Victims of excessive force at the hands of the NYPD, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police, and other law enforcement officials deserve justice. If you or someone you care about has suffered an injury due to the wrongful actions of law enforcement, immediately contact an experienced Manhattan excessive force lawyer at Stephen Bilkis & Associates to discuss your case. With over 20 years of experience fighting for justice for injured victims, we are here to help.

Excessive Force

The job of a police officer is dangerous. They are expected to face situations where their own lives are in danger and where they need to protect the lives of others. Naturally, they will have to use violence, force, and even deadly force on occasion. In fact, they are trained on when to use force, when to use deadly force, and how to use various types of weapons.

However, they are also trained on the amount of force to use in specific situations. It is against the policy of the NYPD and other law enforcement agencies to use excessive force. Excessive force is using more force than is reasonably necessary to control a situation, to protect themselves from harm, or to protect others from harm. Using more force than necessary may not only be a violation of department policy, it may also amount to committing a crime and lead to civil liability.

Examples of unlawful actions by police that can result in civil liability include:

  • Excessive force during arrest. Using violence against an unarmed, cooperative suspect who is not resisting.
  • Coercing a confession. Using physical or psychological force to make a suspect confess to a crime.
  • Unnecessary use of taser or gun. Using a taser or gun against a cooperative suspect.
  • Unnecessary use of deadly force. Using deadly force when unnecessary. As an experienced Manhattan excessive force lawyer will explain, the police are permitted to use deadly force only under conditions where doing so is necessary to protect themselves or others from the use of deadly force.
  • Unnecessary use of other weapons. Using pepper spray, a baton, other nonlethal weapons, or even punches or strikes against a cooperative suspect
  • Improper use of handcuffs and other restraints. Improper handcuffing such that they cause significant bruising or nerve damage.
  • False arrest. Arresting someone without a legally obtained warrant or probable cause.
  • Illegal body cavity or strip searches. Conducting a body cavity or strip search without probable cause and in a manner that violates a person’s right to privacy.

A police officer may also be liable for excessive force for failing to intervene when another officer is using excessive force.

Civil Damages

Victims of excessive force often suffer severe, life-altering physical and emotional injuries, including broken bones, lacerations, loss of teeth, internal injuries, permanent paralysis, head and brain injuries, and several emotional trauma. Victims are entitled to seek justice by contacting an excessive force attorney in Manhattan and filing a civil lawsuit. Through civil lawsuits, victims of excessive force by a police officer may receive substantial compensation to pay for medical treatment, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

In addition, victims may be awarded additional money for punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded when the actions of the police are considered particularly heinous or outrageous.

Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Complaints of excessive force against the NYPD and other law enforcement agencies are common. However, even when video is present, it is challenging proving excessive force and proving damages. For these reasons, if you or a loved one are a victim of excessive force, contact an experienced excessive force attorney serving Manhattan at Stephen Bilkis & Associates. We have the experience, knowledge, and resources to thoroughly investigate cases of excessive force in order to help ensure that victims of police violence get the justice they deserve. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent victims of police excessive force in the Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Staten Island, Bronx, Nassau County, Westchester County, and Suffolk County.

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