Personal Injury Lawyers Proudly serving New York City since 1980

NYC Civil Rights Lawyer

Liberty and justice for the Bronx and beyond

The United States was founded by citizens who believed strongly in protecting the rights of individuals. Those rights, as outlined in our Constitution and Bills of Rights, continue to guide us as a nation and to serve as a beacon of hope for people around the world.

State and Federal laws in New York protect your freedom to engage in protected speech; freedom from unreasonable seizure of your person; freedom from arrest without probable cause; freedom from false imprisonment; freedom from the lodging of false charges against him by police officers; freedom from malicious prosecution by police officers; freedom from deprivation of liberty without due process of law; and equal protection, privileges and immunities under the laws.

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Most law enforcement officials in New York, including police officers, prison guards and sheriffs, respect these rights. But some officials abuse their authority and cause serious harm to people they are supposed to protect.

Fortunately, people whose rights have been violated can take legal action against the officials and institutions they work for in New York. If you believe your rights have been violated, contact Giampa Law. Our firm was founded by a former prosecutor in the Bronx County District Attorney's office. We know how the legal system works and we know how to get results. Schedule an appointment with one of our experienced New York City civil rights lawyers. We can help you pursue the justice you rightfully deserve in the Bronx or elsewhere in the city.

Civil rights cases we handle in New York

Civil rights cases often don't get the attention they deserve. That's because many people believe that the victims did something to deserve such treatment. Ironically, many victims of police misconduct didn't do anything wrong.

Some of the most common civil rights cases we handle involving law enforcement officials in New York City include:

Make sure you take strong legal action as soon as possible. Make sure you contact Giampa Law right away. You may only have 90 days to take legal action against the New York City Police Department or the City of New York.

How we can help you

Law enforcement officials frequently deny intentionally harming a prisoner or someone in police custody. Police departments, prisons and other institutions might even try to claim that the person in custody was the one who started incident.

Our knowledgeable, Bronx civil rights attorneys know how to handle such complex situations and consistently produce positive results. That's why we have such a well-earned reputation in the Bronx and throughout New York City when it comes to legal case involving allegations of civil rights violations.

Find out what we can do for you. Contact Giampa Law and schedule your free case evaluation at our Bronx office located across the street from the Supreme Court of Bronx County. We're here for you when you need us most.

 

Police Misconduct

Courtesy Professionalism Respect - that's the motto on the doors of New York City Police Department vehicles. Unfortunately, this motto isn't always in the hearts and minds of every police officer. Police officers are like any other profession -while most officers conduct themselves with courtesy, professionalism and respect, a few bad apples take advantage of their positions of authority and engage in misconduct.

Police misconduct occurs when an officer violates someone's constitutional rights. Typical examples of misconduct include use of excessive force (e.g. choke hold cases), intentional false arrest (e.g. arrested without probable cause), fabrication of evidence (e.g. to obtain a warrant), discrimination based on race or ethnicity (e.g. stop and frisk cases) and sexual assault (e.g. receiving sexual favors in return for leniency for alleged crimes). Police officers cannot deprive a person of their constitutionally guaranteed rights without good cause.

When a violation occurs, both the individual officer and the department or agency can be liable in civil and criminal courts for the misconduct. An individual who has had their constitutional rights violated and has been deprived of their freedom and liberty by police misconduct, can and should seek justice in the form of a civil suit which can result in monetary compensation and restitution. A potential monetary award can include, for example, compensation for injuries sustained from the use of excessive force and restitution for missed work or a lost job due to an arrest without probable cause. If the officer's conduct was especially egregious, an individual can also potentially receive punitive damages, which is a monetary award given to an injured individual as punishment against the officer who caused the injury. In addition to awarding money, the court can also order an injunction against officers and/or the department in order to prevent further misconduct.

In addition, some incidents are part of a pattern of consistent misconduct on the part of specific police officers. The same abusive officer might have treated other people in police custody the same way. But obtaining evidence of a pattern of misconduct can be very difficult because the police precinct where such violations occurred could be in possession of such evidence.

We can fight to obtain the documentation you need to prove your case. Our law firm has decades of experience with police misconduct cases. We have achieved success in a diverse range of police misconduct cases including Taser deaths, police assaults against handcuffed individuals, officers who lied to get an arrest warrant, officers who fabricated evidence to get search warrants, shooting deaths and unprovoked assaults by officers.

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Police Brutality

Our attorneys handle many different types of police brutality cases in New York City. Some of the most common ones we handle involve:

  • FALSE ARREST - Police officers need to have a legitimate reason for arresting someone. Specifically, police need to have "reasonable suspicion" or probable cause to arrest someone and detain them or charge them with a crime. Unfortunately, some police officers abuse this power and arrest people under false pretenses.

False arrest happens far more often than many people might realize. This flagrant abuse of power erodes people's faith in the justice system and undermines their trust in law enforcement. As a result, the justice system grants people the right to pursue legal action against law enforcement officials who falsely arrest them.

If you have been subjected to a false arrest, you may have the right to seek financial compensation against the officer who falsely arrested you and the police department the officer works for. However, such legal cases can be extremely challenging. That's why you need an experienced police brutality lawyer to handle your case.

  • ABUSE OF POWER - Strict state and federal laws exist in New York governing the powers granted to police officers. That's because the justice system realizes that the abuse of police power can have a detrimental effect on the communities they serve. Instead of residents trusting police to protect them, residents live in fear of police abusing them or violating their civil rights.

Abuse of police power can cover a wide range of crimes, including assault, false arrest, excessive force and illegal killings. Many victims of police abuse of power believe there is nothing they can do legally in response to officers who injured them.

Fortunately, victims of police abuse can take legal action and pursue damages (financial compensation) from the officer and the police department they work for. If you believe that you or a loved one was a victim of police abuse of power, contact our Bronx law firm right away. We have the experience and the expertise to make things right.

  • ASSAULT - Police officers who illegally assault someone can - and should - be held legally responsible for their actions. The injuries sustained in a police assault can be very severe and require hospitalization and emergency medical treatment. But it's not just the physical scars that can leave a lasting impression. The psychological trauma of such attacks can often last for years.

That's why it's critical that you contact our law firm if you or a family member has been assaulted by a police officer in New York. Our attorneys have decades of experience investigating such allegations and successfully taking legal action in police assault cases throughout the New York City area.

  • POLICE SHOOTINGS - Police officers should only use their firearm as a last resort. Unfortunately, some police officers use their guns in inappropriate ways, resulting in someone being unnecessarily shot by a police officer.

Strict rules and regulations exist in New York governing how and when police officers can use their weapons to stop a suspect. Most police officers respect these rules and strictly follow them. But a few reckless police officers sometimes ignore these rules and shoot innocent civilians.

If you or a loved one has been shot by a police officer, you may be able to pursue legal action against the officer and the police department. In many cases, victims of police shootings in New York City can seek financial compensation for their injuries and the trauma associated with such violent attacks.

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Taser Injuries

New York police officers and other law enforcement officials sometimes use Tasers in an attempt to subdue an individual without using lethal force. Unfortunately, Tasers can inflict serious injuries, despite claims made by the manufacturer, Taser International Inc., that such devices cause no harm.

Tasers have been known to cause serious injuries and even death in certain circumstances. However, based on assertions made by Taser Inc., many law enforcement officials have used Tasers on people without knowing the harm such devices can cause in certain circumstances. In some cases, some people who have been Tasered have died as a result.

If you or someone you love was injured by police or other law enforcement agencies wielding Tasers, you may be able to recover financial compensation for your pain and suffering. Let us help you get the restitution you deserve.

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High Speed Pursuits

High speed chases involving police officers pursuing suspects in New York City can be extremely dangerous. Such incidents might look entertaining on television and in movies. But the reality is officers who pursue suspects driving at a high rate of speed (sometimes in excess of 100 mph) put other drivers and pedestrians at risk of serious injuries or even death.

Many high speed pursuits end in serious accidents. As a result, strict rules and regulations exist governing when and how police officers can safely pursue alleged criminals in New York. Unfortunately, some overzealous police officers ignore these rules and chase after people suspected of committing minor criminal infractions. And when these officers do, they put the lives of many innocent people at risk.

If you or a loved one was a victim of an accident caused by high speed police chase, contact our Bronx law firm immediately. You may be able to receive financial compensation for your injuries, pain, suffering and loss. You only have a limited amount of time to take legal action under New York's statute of limitation laws. Don't miss out on the justice you deserve.

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Jail and Prison Injuries 

Specific rules and regulations existing concerning the rights and responsibilities of prison guards and other employees at correctional facilities in New York and other states. In certain circumstances, such employees might not be held responsible for injuries sustained to prisoners while being incarcerated.

But such rules do not completely excuse correctional officers, police officers and other staff members from certain injuries that occur while people are in police custody. Such injuries often involve:

  • Bus accidents while being transported to correctional facility or court
  • Negligent conditions (slip-and-falls, etc.)
  • Violent attacks by fellow inmates (particularly if prison guards failed to prevent such attacks)
  • Correctional officers physically assaulting prisoners
  • Denial of medical attention to injured or ill inmates
  • Ignoring credible information of an anticipated attack of an inmate

Correctional facilities like Rikers Island and other prisons and jails exist to house people suspected of criminal activity awaiting trial or convicted of a crime in a court of law. But just because someone has been charged or convicted of a crime does not mean correctional officers have the right to violate their constitutional rights.  People have a reasonable expectation to be housed in a facility that does not pose a serious risk to their personal safety or health.

If you believe your civil rights have been violated while being incarcerated, a personal injury lawsuit can be can be filed in federal or state court under § 1983 of the United States Code. Such cases can be extremely complicated from a legal standpoint. In particular, inmates who claim they sustained an injury while being incarcerated must present evidence of wrongdoing in most cases.

Our Bronx law firm has decades of experience handling such complex cases throughout New York. We know how to find the facts you need to build a strong legal case. And we're prepared to do the work that needs to be done to succeed. Depending on the circumstances of your injury, you may be able to obtain financial compensation for your injuries, as well as seek punitive damages, which are intended to punish correctional officers for violating a prisoner's civil rights.

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Location

Giampa Law
860 Grand Concourse, #1H
Bronx, NY 10451
Phone: (718) 665-7700
Fax: (718) 665-2861