What is “Police Misconduct”?
How Do We Define What Constitutes “Police Misconduct”?
There are, essentially, three categories of “Police Misconduct”. What follows is a three part series of each of these categories.
Part 1 – “Keystone Kops” Situation:
This is a situation where, through either carelessness or neglect, officers will perform legitimate police functions, but do so in a way that is faulty.
Perhaps the simplest example is where officers enter (or “raid”) the wrong house or apartment. We have actually had a case where the police, intending to execute a perfectly legal search warrant for Apartment 1A, mistakenly enter Apartment 2A. What compounds the error is that upon entering the “suspect” apartment, the officers perform otherwise proper police procedures upon the occupants. In this particular instance, the occupants were a husband and wife in their 80’s, who were made to lie on the floor–and had their hands handcuffed behind their backs !! This, after a dozen or so heavily armed police officers in full armored gear, had just invaded their apartment. When the mistake in the choice of apartment became known, there was little the police could do to erase the fear, anxiety and sheer terror this elderly couple had experienced.
This couple sought legal assistance and was in a position to be compensated for this terrifying experience.