Getting arrested is a stressful experience, but even more so when it’s unwarranted. The Fourth Amendment protects U.S. citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures, which includes seizures of a person. This is what makes a false arrest against the law. When this type of crime is committed, the person targeted may hire a lawyer to help them seek damages in a civil claim. Here is a basic guide to help bring clarity to the concept of false arrest.
What to Know Before Pursuing a False Arrest Claim
When is an Arrest Lawful in New York?
Having a police badge doesn’t give law enforcement the authority to arrest someone on a whim. In New York, an arrest is only legal if an officer has an arrest warrant, probable cause to believe the person committed a crime, good reason to believe a suspect is attempting to flee the crime scene, or proof a person is interfering with a police investigation or arrest. Generally, if a private citizen is making an arrest, they must inform the person they are being arrested and explain why.
How Do You Prove a False Arrest Claim?
For a person to establish they are owed damages after being falsely arrested, they must work with a lawyer to prove a few specific elements exist in their case. This includes showing that the defendant intended to detain the plaintiff, the plaintiff was aware of the detention, the plaintiff did not consent to the arrest, and the detainment was not otherwise legally justified.
Who Can Be Held Responsible For a False Arrest?
Many people believe only police officers can be held liable for false arrest. However, it’s also possible to bring legal action against police departments, security personnel, or any citizen that detains someone without their consent or legal authority. If a person who experienced a false arrest can provide evidence they were harmed by the event, they may be able to recover damages for physical, emotional, and financial injury.
The lawyers at Ozman Law Offices in Walden, NY, have an in-depth knowledge of false arrest and how these types of cases work. Offering years of litigation experience and an impressive track record of success, they can help you present a solid argument proving your arrest was unlawful. Call (845) 778-7777 to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer or visit them online for more information about the services they provide.