Police are responsible for serving the public and protecting the interests of those they serve. Unfortunately, they do not always act in a way that is appropriate and legal, and civilians may pay the price for these actions. Police brutality is a serious matter, and those who are victims of these illegal actions have the right to speak out. If you are a victim, you do not have to remain silent about what you experienced.
Police violence is a grave concern, and those impacted by it may be unsure of what to do next. You will benefit from understanding your rights and learning more about what you can do to hold responsible parties accountable for the mistreatment you experienced. Police brutality is more than just a frustration as it can result in physical harm or even the death of New Mexico civilians.
Understanding the problem
Police often use excessive force when apprehending someone, maintaining control of a crowd or questioning a subject. While police brutality can include various types of behaviors, it often includes unnecessary physical force or the use of unreasonable measures, such as employing tear gas or rubber bullets. Some important facts about police brutality include:
- Police may kill or mistreat citizens due to racism or discrimination.
- Police brutality is a human rights issue, but the perpetrators often do not receive justice.
- The unlawful use of force is a violation of one’s right to life and liberty.
- Police should only use lethal force as a very last resort and only in the most extreme circumstances.
- There are methods of de-escalation and control that do not require physical force or harming the subject.
- There are both state and federal laws that prohibit police brutality in any form.
Victims of police brutality have the right to seek justice. It can be intimidating to confront the actions of law enforcement, but you do not have to do this alone.
Fight for your rights
You have certain rights, regardless of the suspicions of the police or the allegations against you. If there is evidence that you experienced police brutality, you could have grounds for a civil claim against the police department and other parties. After an arrest or an incident involving law enforcement, it may be in your interests to seek an assessment of your case with an experienced legal professional in order to understand the legal options available to you.