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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27726
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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Zoey, How can we get justice for a 43 year old man who ran

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Hi Zoey,
How can we get justice for a 43 year old man who ran out of house onto his street, unarmed and in complete distress over (that's still the mystery)
6 police officers were called. 2 Saratoga county officers, 2 Ballston Spa offices and 2 NY State Troopers. This man ended up dad. The Tazzed him multiple times, kicked him and jumped on his head. The coroner refused to let his daughter see him.
What options do we have? This happened Sept 20,2014


I'm Zoey.

I'm reviewing your post. Please be patient as I may need to research for you, and it also takes time to compose and type a reply.

This is a horrible situation, and I am very sorry to hear about the death of this person.

Police are allowed to use force to make an arrest, but they are only allowed to use what's reasonably necessary to do so. Basically, they are required to use the least amount of force needed to address the situation. Here it certainly sounds as if they well-exceeded the amount of permissible force needed to accomplish an arrest.

The family of the decedent would have been able to bring a suit against the police for brutality and wrongful death. The difficulty is that such suits must be brought quickly, as in order to bring suit against a government agency in NYS, one must file a notice of claim within 30 days, making the agency aware that you intend to sue. One doesn't have to file the actual suit that quickly, but the notice must be filed in timely fashion. Failure to do that will generally result in the dismissal of the suit when you try to file it later on.

So, unfortunately, although there was relief and justice which would have been possible for the family of the 43-year-old, it is likely too late to do anything at this time. I suggest that you find a local civil rights lawyer who deals with this kind of suit and have a consultation to determine whether there is any good cause exception which would get around the notice requirement.

Just checking in to see if you need more help or any clarification of my answer. If so, please reply here on this question thread.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Hi Zoey,
It's been a while so you may to have review my situation...
The notice of claim was filed; but was that deadline 30 or 90 days? His daughter, the administrator, was the only one with the power to file. She is estranged from the family and never notified anyone of the status of the suit she said in the beginning that she was going to pursue. The prosecutor was unsuccessful with the criminal suit and his daughter said she intended to file a civil suit. We recently found out that a civil suit was never filed. The family is devastated because they were hopeful justice was in the works and now it looks like there may never be any justice. We have paid thousands for a private detective and have a lot of evidence of excessive force on the deceased... four officers beat him to death while 2 state troopers stood by.. he should not be dead.Is there any way the individuals officers could be pursued? By anyone?
I was a good friend of the deceased and had loaned him money for startup capital for a new business just 3 days before he died. It seems ridiculous and I don't even care about the $, but would there be any avenue I could use to bring suit against them because I could never recover my money because of his unnecessary death? Is there anyway a statute of limitations could be reversed for any reason?Is there anyway the mother of his minor son could file anything against the officers in the interest of her son?? He must have some recourse... ? his older half sister (the executor), never did not acknowledge him.
What about his mother? She is completely broken by her son's untimely death... Im also wondering what reasons could be used to bring suit against these officers who seemed to be so incompetent that they couldn't handcuff a distressed young man. He was combative but he was ONE person against 4-6 police officers..
Thank you

It's 90 days. I apologize for the typo.

No. The statute of limitations can only be ignored if both parties to a suit agree to do that, and I don't see why the police would do so. If the deceased was married, his wife could bring a wrongful death suit if the statute hasn't run. If no wife, his mother could do so.

If the suit is time barred, all they can do at this point is file complaints against the officers with their superior officers, Internal Affair and with the State Attorney General.

I strive for 5-star service. If I have addressed all of your concerns, please take the time to rate my service to you by selecting 3, 4, or (hopefully) 5 stars on the rating scale, as that is the only way that JustAnswer gives us Experts credit for our work. You would still be able to post further follow ups on this question thread about this for no additional cost, even after I've been rated.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
He was not married, and did not have a will. Since his daughter is not pursuing anything, can ANYONE file a suit against individual officers? And what would that filing be called? Can you tell me if this suit could be filed now? Sept 20th will be 3 years since his death.
Thank you

It would be a wrongful death suit. If a notice of claim was filed within 90 days of the incident, it would still be timely.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
But it would only be timely if the satute of limitaions runs up this Sept? Is the statue of limitaions 2 or 3 years fo file the civil suit?

Wrongful death is two years from the death. Personal injury can be three years.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
2 years has past. You can file a personal injury suit although the victim is dead?

Maybe. It's a gray area. The potential plaintiff would need to contact a local civil lawyer and see if it can still be done given the facts and circumstances of the case.

Zoey_ JD and 3 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Hi again,
When you say a "complaint" could be filed against the officer's superiors, Internal Affairs and State Attorney General, do ANY of those three or all three would need to be filed with?

You're not required to file all three, but what you want to do is to try to get the officers investigated and sanctioned for their conduct, so it's best that you report them to as many agencies or people as you can. These are the agencies/people who investigate police misconduct and who can hold them accountable. But if you wanted to go further, you could involve your local and state politicians and even the media.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
How would I go about involving local and State politicians and the media?
thank you

You write to them and tell them about the situation and hope they show interest.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
can i file against then myself or need to have attorney do it?

You can do it yourself.