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What is considered a civil rights violation during an arrest?

Being arrested is not an easy event to live through. It is especially difficult if you believe that you were wrongfully arrested based on your race. False arrests or false imprisonment can be a very emotional matter, generating animosity between society and law enforcement. While law enforcement officers are hired to protect and obey our laws, this does not always occur. And when an individual is arrested simply because of his or her race, this is likely a civil rights matter.

What is considered a civil rights violation during an arrest? It is obvious that law enforcement officers and other officials are given a tremendous amount of power through local, state and federal government agencies. This authority is to enforce the laws of the land and ensure justice. However, when these powers are misapplied or abused, this could give rise to a civil rights action.

If a law enforcement officer or official is acting under the color of law, which means the authorities granted to them, in order to deprive or conspire to deprive an individual of his or her rights protected by the Constitution of U.S. law, this is considered to be a violation of that person's civil rights.

Various acts by a law enforcement official could constitute a civil rights violation. This typically includes excessive force, sexual assaults, false arrests, the fabrication of evidence and the failure to keep from harm. If these or any other similar events have occurred, it is possible to take legal action. This could help with the defense of any pending criminal charges as well as a civil action for the harms caused to you.

Source:, "Civil Rights," accessed Nov. 27, 2017

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