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AttorneyTom, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
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My 19 year old son was driving to work in Dallas County, TX

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My 19 year old son was driving to work in Dallas County, TX on July 28th. He was pulled over by an aggressive policeman who, along with four other policemen ultimatley searched his car without permission, handcuffed him, kicked him, and arrested him. This arrest took place even after there was nothing found in the car that would warrant being arrested for. They charged him with "Resisting Arrest" and no other charges were filed. Additionally, $40 and a laptop computer are now missing.
I am confident that the police video will show that he was not the aggressor in this incident and did not fight back in any way. Lastly, he has no criminal record and has never been in trouble with the law.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  AttorneyTom replied 6 years ago.
Please clarify:
What is your question?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Are there grounds to foul a civil suit gainst the arresting officer(s)/department?

Expert:  AttorneyTom replied 6 years ago.

­Please click Accept so that I will receive credit for my time and effort spent responding to your question.

Thank you for your question.

Possibly. However, it's important to understand that suing a government agency or a government employee acting in the line of his duties to a government agency can be very problematic due to sovereign immunity. Sovereign immunity complicates such lawsuits heavily. For your benefit, I've included a link below to more information about sovereign immunity.

Such lawsuits are filed from time to time and, occasionally, plaintiffs do recover for issues such as police brutality. Officers may not arbitrarily beat or arrest an individual and the department may be liable for such conduct, as well as any property that may be stolen during an arrest. Property seized during an arrest must be properly held and returned to an individual later unless it's being held for evidentiary purposes.

If he's being charged with resisting arrest, he'll need to retain an attorney to represent him in the matter. The Texas statute for that crime is absurd in that it specifically states that "it is no defense to prosecution under this section that the arrest or search was unlawful." TEX PE. CODE ANN. § 38.03(b). Therefore, it's necessary to show that he wasn't preventing or obstructing the officers from arresting him. His attorney can assist him with that effort.

Sovereign Immunity

While I can control the quality of an answer, my control over the content of an answer is restrained by the truth. Please do not shoot the messenger.

Please remember to click Accept and leave Positive Feedback so that I will receive credit for my time and effort spent responding to your question. Bonuses are always greatly appreciated. Clicking accept does not close the question and you are still welcome to ask follow-up questions if you need clarification.




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