Excessive Force & Police Misconduct Attorney in Las Vegas

Police officers do a tough, demanding, and dangerous job every day to keep Las Vegas safe for everyone, residents and tourists alike. However, officers can overstep the boundaries of policing and engage in misconduct, including excessive force, that violates citizens’ constitutional rights. When this happens, their actions must be examined to determine how far is too far and if victims are owed damages.

If you believe Vegas police used excessive force during your arrest, an excessive force and police misconduct attorney from De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers can seek damages against the liable party and seek to prove they violated your civil rights. We also defend law enforcement officers who have been accused of using excessive force or police misconduct. Whichever is your situation, our attorney will review your situation and advise you of your next steps during a free consultation with our team today.

What is considered ‘Excessive Force’

The law allows police and other Nevada law enforcement officers to use some level of force to maintain or regain control of particular circumstances. They are also entitled to use deadly force in certain situations, as well—but only when necessary, as outlined in NRS § 200.140. Such instances include when an officer needs to arrest or apprehend someone, stop a suspect or escaped inmate from fleeing, or protect themselves from harm. 

Excessive force occurs when law enforcement’s actions step outside of the bounds of what is reasonable, necessary, or legal to subdue a suspect or control a situation. It is behavior that breaks the law or violates a person’s civil rights. Police can engage in excessive force in many ways. 

Examples of Excessive Police Force

Common examples of excessive police force include:

  • Excessive physical force: This includes hitting, slapping, punching, or otherwise physically battering a victim when it is not necessary to do so. These situations may involve using guns, batons, tasers, and other items on subdued victims who are complying with police and following their orders. This is one reason why such use is seen as unjustified or unreasonable.
  • Use of physical restraints: Using handcuffs, zip ties, chokeholds, and other neck restraints on victims who have been apprehended and cooperating with police can be considered excessive force. An example of unnecessary force also includes being held down while restrained.
  • Use of chemical agents: Sometimes, police officers may resort to using pepper spray, tear gas, and other chemical agents to control large crowds at protest or riot scenes. These riot control agents can irritate and injure the eyes, nose, skin, lungs, and other areas of the body. When these agents are used on peaceful, controlled crowds, it can be viewed as excessive use of police force. These items are intended for unruly, hard-to-control crowds.
  • Verbal abuse: Tempers and emotions can run high between police officers and citizens, and charged words can be exchanged. However, police officers who use slurs and derogatory comments could be viewed as crossing the line into using excessive force. 

An excessive force lawyer with our Las Vegas firm will review the circumstances of your situation and determine if the police officer’s actions amount to excessive force.

What Is Police Misconduct?

Police misconduct is any action that breaks the law or guidelines police are supposed to follow while performing their duties. Excessive force is one type of police misconduct. Others include:

  • Police brutality
  • False arrest
  • Lying, making false reports
  • Witness or evidence tapering
  • Racial profiling
  • Coerced (forced) confessions
  • Planted evidence
  • Sexual assault
  • Improper use of a firearm
  • Illegal search and seizures

Generally, police misconduct is any action that is outside the scope of a law enforcement officer’s job. It is also any action that violates a person’s civil rights.

Who Is Liable in Cases Involving Excessive Force or Police Misconduct?

Proving that excessive force and police misconduct occurred can be a complex undertaking. It can also be challenging to determine who is legally liable for damages in these cases. Each case is unique, and the case’s outcome will depend on the facts, circumstances, and other variables involved. Depending on the case’s facts, a plaintiff may bring a case against the officer or the police department where they are employed. 

Sometimes, actions that can be viewed as police misconduct can occur by mistake, which can be due to a lack of training or inexperience. In other cases, it can be construed as intentional harm. Either way, excessive force, and police misconduct can cause victims hardship that is challenging to overcome. They can suffer serious physical, mental, and emotional injuries, and losses that affect their income and way of life. 

How We Can Help in a Vegas Excessive Force & Police Misconduct Case

If you believe Las Vegas police mishandled you with excessive force or that they engaged in misconduct in any way, you may want to retain legal representation as soon as you can. Your attorney will need time to build a case for the lawsuit they will file on your behalf. 

It is on the plaintiffs in these cases to prove a police officer or law enforcement official overstepped their boundaries and engaged in misconduct. You may be able to press criminal charges by filing a complaint with the local district attorney’s office, which decides whether to move forward with a case. 

We Can Seek Civil Action Against Law Enforcement on Your Behalf

If you hire us to file a civil case against law enforcement, our police misconduct lawyer in Las Vegas will manage your entire case. First, we will get your side of the story so that we understand what happened. We will thoroughly investigate the situation, review any police reports filed, and seek to collect evidence proving how you were treated while in police custody. Such evidence can include witness testimony, surveillance footage, or footage from a police body camera. 

Having video footage can help us prove how you were treated during your arrest. We will set out to build your case to establish that excessive force or misconduct took place. If found guilty of excessive force or misconduct, a police officer can be prosecuted under federal and state laws. We can also assist you in filing a civil complaint and/or a police misconduct report. We will also ensure you meet all important deadlines as we keep your case on track.

Recoverable Compensation in an Excessive Police Force & Police Misconduct Case

Our police misconduct attorney in Las Vegas will review the facts, details, and circumstances of your case and determine who is liable for your injuries. The damages you could recover will depend on various factors, including how severe your injuries are, how long it will take you to recover from them, and whether they could affect you for the rest of your life. You may be able to recover compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages and lost earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental and emotional distress
  • Loss of a limb 
  • Permanent disability
  • Other incident-related expenses

If a loved one died due to an incident involving excessive police force and misconduct in Las Vegas, our attorney could help the family file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • The deceased’s lost income
  • Loss of companionship 

Our legal team will walk you through the process of pursuing this legal action according to Nevada’s laws for wrongful death actions.

We Offer Defense for Vegas Police Facing Misconduct Charges, Lawsuits

If you are a law enforcement official who is accused of abusing your authority by engaging in excessive force or police misconduct, our lawyer can represent you and defend you against these allegations. We understand that protecting citizens is not an easy job to do and that law enforcement officers must often make decisions in the face of stressful and uncertain situations every day. We also realize that your job requires that you think on your feet and quickly make decisions. Sometimes, these decisions lead to unintended consequences.

Vegas officers accused of police misconduct have a lot on the line in these cases, including possible fines, prison, and the loss of a career of serving and protecting the public, if they are found in violation of state and federal laws or department rules. Hiring legal counsel to take on your case is strongly advised. We will conduct a full investigation, collect evidence that establishes your position, and develop a defense strategy that is specific to your case. We will help you tell your story and seek to clear your name.

Call Us Today for a Free Consultation 

Whether you experienced excessive force or police misconduct during your interaction with law enforcement or you are on the law enforcement side facing police misconduct charges or allegations, you deserve to protect your rights as you seek due process. Our police misconduct attorney in Las Vegas is ready to help you with your case and explain what comes next.

The team at De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers puts our legal knowledge and experience to work for you and seeks the best outcome for your case. We will work to protect your future as we fight the charges in your case. Reach out to us today for a free consultation and case review.