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Ask TexCrimLawyer, J.D. Your Own Question
TexCrimLawyer, J.D.
TexCrimLawyer, J.D., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 4785
Experience:  Experienced in state and federal criminal litigation.
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I have a brother that is being harrassed by police. He is a

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I have a brother that is being harrassed by police. He is a prior drug addict and diagnosed with mental issues. He's been perscribed medication for his mental problems and hasn't used in over 3 months. Yes he has been in trouble before but the police act as if he is a hardened criminal or animal without feelings. Every time he is on the street he is told to keep walking, go home and get off the streets. They have given him numerous citations costing $300 or more. He may ask for cigeretts or a dollar to purchase one sometimes. I was told by the chief of police that they have seen him with bags in his hand as if he has purchased something from a store and other times he's empty handed and loitering. I asked so because he has nothing in his had does that mean that he is loitering. I believe that his civil rights and liberties are being violated and would like to have an investigation into the police practices. Can you point me into the right direction to start some sort of action.

Chris T., JD :

Good evening. I'll be assisting you with your question.

Chris T., JD :

What are the citations for?

Customer:

Loitering

Chris T., JD :

So, is it your belief that he is not violating the law, or that he is being singled out?

Customer:

He is being singled out. He has no job and can't hold down one.

Chris T., JD :

In order to make out a civil rights violation (sometimes called a 1983 violation, after the US code section), the first thing you have to prove is that some Constitutional right of his is being violated. Usually, that presents as police brutality, police falsely charging someone, or something along those lines. It is not a Constitutional violation for the police to give a particular person a valid ticket, even if they wouldn't give that ticket to someone else.

Chris T., JD :

Ultimately, if they are giving him lawful tickets, even if they wouldn't give those to other people, there isn't anything you can do.

Chris T., JD :

Now, if the police are unnecessarily rough with him and actually harm him, or they are intentionally charging him falsely, he can bring a 1983 action, but from what you've described so far, I don't think there is much he can do.

Customer:

Not even if they are calling out his name when others are around and they are not made to leave the area. If he is not doing anything illegal except talking or sitting on a bench.

Chris T., JD :

I'm sorry, but that is not a civil rights violation.

Customer:

Thank you.

Chris T., JD :

If he's not breaking the law, he doesn't have to get off the bench. If they falsely arrest him, he may have something, but just calling out his name is, from a civil rights perspective, a non-event.

Customer:

Thank you again. Good-bye

Chris T., JD :

I'm sorry for the bad news.

Chris T., JD :

Glad to help. If I can't do anything else for you, please remember to "rate" my answer before you go.

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