Can You Sue For Injuries Sustained Due to Police Misconduct?

Every year, an estimated 55,000 people are injured or killed by police officers across the United States. While some of these injuries or deaths are the result of justifiable uses of force, in many cases they are the result of police misconduct. But what exactly is police misconduct, and how can law enforcement be held responsible for injuries they inflict as a result of that misconduct?… Read the rest

NYC Comptroller’s Office 2013 Claims Report Makes Recommendations to Reduce Motor Vehicle Accident Claims; Cites Increase in Claims Against Police

Earlier this week, the New York City Comptroller’s Office, which under the New York City Charter, is responsible for settling and adjusting claims for and against the City, released its fiscal report for the year 2012. In FY 2012, the City paid out $485.9 million in personal injury and property damage tort settlements and judgments, 12 percent less than in FY 2011. However, the cost of these claims to the City still hovers at nearly a half billion dollars annually. In FY 2012, the costliest personal injury claims category was medical malpractice, which cost the City $109.9 million. The second … Read the rest

2010 Marks Fewest Fatal Police-Involved Shootings Since 1971 and Lowest Number of Total Shooting Incidents by Police Since Formal Reporting Began 40 Years Ago

According to the New York City Police Department, police shot and killed eight subjects last year compared to 93 in 1971, the year to which reliable data on firearms discharges may be tracked. An additional 16 were wounded last year – another record low. The number wounded in 1971 was 221.

The record lows were recorded despite significant increases in the both the department’s headcount and capacity of its firearms compared to the 1970s. There were approximately 4,000 fewer officers (31,000 total) on the force in 1971 compared to 35,000 last year. Prior to 1993, New York City police officers … Read the rest

Police Assertion of Qualified Immunity Insufficient to Gain Dismissal of Civil Rights Claim For Death Resulting from Use of Excessive Force

Plaintiff Leroy Rasanen, in Rasanen v. Brown, — F.Supp.2d —-, 2009 WL 766205 (E.D.N.Y.,2009.) (decided March 25, 2009) brought this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.1983 (“Section 1983”), alleging that New York State Troopers used excessive force in fatally shooting his son John Rasanen (“Rasanen”) during a search of Rasanen’s home. The plaintiff alleged that the shooting constituted excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment and that the Defendants were negligent in failing to conduct the search and deal with Rasanen’s shooting “in accordance with professional norms and standards.”

The defendants moved for summary judgment dismissing the complaint … Read the rest

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