Monday, July 6, 2009

LAPD Officers Suspended for Showing Excessive Force

Police authorities are defenders of civilian rights. They enforce the law and ensure that it is strictly adhered to. However, when they exceed the exercise of their authority, punishment is imposed.

In May 2007, eleven Los Angeles Police Officers were accused of using excessive force on demonstrators and journalists at the May Day gathering at MacArthur Park. The incident produced public opinion regarding police brutality.

Due to the tumultuous incident, Police Chief William J. Bratton punished 11 officers and recommended the termination of four others. The officers were sent to the Board of Rights for disciplinary actions. The melee caused the city $13 million in legal settlements.

After investigation, the officers involved were given a maximum penalty of suspension. As no officers were dismissed, Batton said he could no longer do something as the ultimate decision lies with the board.

The counsels for the demonstrators were distraught with the Board’s decision. Despite submitting videos showing unauthorized force, officers were only reprimanded while others suspended.

On their part, the accused officers cited lack of training, poor leadership and overly aggressive tactics as causes of their illegal conduct.

Police officers are required to observe maximum tolerance when dealing with demonstrators or the general public. The use of excessive force is never encouraged and is in fact prohibited. Otherwise, officers may not only face administrative actions but criminal actions as well.

For people who have been a victim of an excessive display of force by a police, a case may be filed against them. If injury resulted in the process, a personal injury case may prosper.