Since the Ferguson, Missouri shooting of Michael Brown in 2014, people across the country are particularly tuned into the topic of police brutality. It seems that not a week goes by that we do not hear about the latest confrontation between a police agency and criminal suspects. This is a developing area of the law that sometimes sees wrongful death cases settled with families for millions.
Lawsuits based on alleged police brutality involve aspects of both personal injury and civil rights laws. Because of acute sensitivity to such cases, these matters are often in the public eye. Often, there is video taken of the suspect-police interactions, some of which leak out as a lawsuit proceeds. Through it all, families usually suffer quietly in the background.
Police brutality cases are typically hard to win, however. The law includes an immunity from lawsuits when law enforcement officers act reasonably in the line of duty. Whether the police acted reasonably and in accordance with established law is typically at the core of these cases.
Despite the general rule of immunity, more and more government agencies are settling lawsuits involving alleged police brutality. Consider these high-profile settlements:
- The City of Baltimore settled a case with Freddie Gray’s family for $6.4 million.
- The City of New York settled a case with Eric Garner’s family for $5.9 million, a case with Sean Bell’s family for $7 million, and a case with Ramarly Graham’s family for $3.9 million.
- The City of North Charleston, N.C., settled a case with Walter Scott’s family for $6.5 million.
- Orange County settled a case with Manuel Loggins, Jr.’s family for $4.4 million.
While settlements cannot compensate a family for the loss of a loved one, they do help to create awareness of this issue and to hold police agencies responsible for their actions.
Regardless of the cause, you can never completely recover after wrongful death of a loved one. If you need expert advice about the facts of your case, contact the experienced, compassionate lawyers at Alexander Law Group, LLP. Call us today at 888.777.1776 for a free case consultation. We help our clients recover monetary compensation for their injuries and expenses.