Have you ever been concerned about police brutality in your community? Unfortunately, issues of excessive force and police abuse of power happen all over the country. They might even happen in your own backyard. It is important to understand what police brutality is, and how it might impact your community. If you live in Southington, Connecticut, learn more about police brutality issues in your area here.
What is Police Brutality?
But first, it is important to understand what police brutality is. Not all police instigated violence is considered police brutality. The police are allowed to use force in order to protect themselves and the public. But if an officer uses too much force, or “excessive force” for a given situation, they could be held responsible.
If you think that you are the victim of police brutality, there are things that you can do to protect yourself and get help. You might consider filing a civil rights complaint or a complaint with the United States Department of Justice. For additional information about your options, contact an attorney in your area.
Police Brutality in Southington, Connecticut
While you don’t want to think that there is police brutality in your community, Southington has had some recent brutality issues. Learn more about them below:
- A 1983 civil rights claim for use of excessive force by a Southington and Plainville police officers was dismissed and granted in part. Gothberg v. Town of Plainville, 148 F. Supp. 3d 168, 198 (D. Conn. 2015). This source says that the plaintiff alleges he was cooperative in the investigation Southington police were conducting against him by showing up to their precinct and turned over his firearm. Police then a day later obtained an emergency warrant because of the plaintiff’s alleged erratic behavior and arrested him at a movie theater in Plainville with the help of Plainville police. The plaintiff alleges that he was cooperative with the police, but that two Plainville officers fired upon seeing him and seriously injuring his left foot. The plaintiff claims the Plainville officers violated his civil rights for using excessive force when they shot at him when he was cooperating, Southington police violated his rights when they did not intervene to protect him, and the town of Plainville was liable for its employees actions. The Connecticut Federal District Court dismissed the claims against the town of Plainville, holding them not responsible for their employees actions. But the court held both the claims against the Plainville and Southington police officers viable enough to move forward to trial.
- A pro se (without an attorney) brought a claim of unreasonable force in the course of his arrest by Southington Police. Molnar v. Doerfler, 488 F. Supp. 2d 138 (D. Conn. 2007). This source claims that the police allege that they apprehended the plaintiff after they found him holding down a naked female who claimed he had kidnapped her and sexually assaulted her. His claim for excessive force by Southington Police officers was dismissed by the Connecticut Federal District Court because the officers used reasonable force to arrest him and get the victim to safety.
As you can see, determining if the police committed police brutality can be tricky. Sometimes, people make complaints and lawsuits that are ultimately dismissed by a court. This is why it is best to talk to an attorney before moving forward with a police brutality case. A lawyer can review your situation and make sure that you have a solid case before you waste time and money.