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Good morning. I am Loren, a licensed attorney, and I look forward to assisting you.
Why were the police called to the scene?
Has he appeared in court on the criminal charge?
Does he have any reason to believe that he was targeted due to his race, religion, ethnicity, etc.?
Does he have physical injuries for which he received medical treatment?
Did he brandish the sword or threaten anyone with it before he was arrested?
Thank you for the additional information.
Yes, if he was attacked for his race or religion then he would have cause of action against the store owner. It is essential to his claim that the criminal matter be dismissed. In other words, his first step MUST be to retain a criminal defense attorney to get the UPW charge dismissed. Otherwise, the civil rights claim is a non-starter. He can not plead to a lesser charge either.
Once the criminal charge is disposed of, he can pursue a civil rights claim, as well as assault and battery claims against the store owner who attacked him. The police may be a bit more difficult to prove since your facts do not state that they really did anything more than take him out and charge him based upon, not doubt, the store owner's complaint. However, if your friend sought their help and they offered none, due to his race, religion, ethnicity, etc., then that would be the basis for a claim against the county or city.
Any metal blade with an edge can be an unlawful weapon. A sword, whether purchased in a gift shop or pawn shop is a weapon by any legal definition.
If you need assistance finding local counsel try Martindale Hubble (site rules prohibit us from referring specific attorneys) . Many attorneys themselves use this site to locate attorneys outside their jurisdiction or expertise:
http://www.martindale.com/Find-Lawyers-and-Law-Firms.aspxIt is a huge worldwide database searchable by location and specialty. The attorneys are all peer rated. So, they represent the top of the profession.
Remember, your first step is retaining a criminal defense attorney to get the criminal charge dismissed. That is step one. The civil rights case is dead if there is a conviction on the criminal charge. They will fight for a criminal conviction if the civil rights claim is pending. So, you may wan to attend to the criminal matter before even hinting that you will be pursuing a civil rights claim.
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