Unfortunately, false arrests in NYC are all too common. Every day, throughout the City’s five boroughs, men and women are falsely arrested for crimes that they did not commit, and often times, where the police officers that arrested them did not even have probable cause for the arrest. Fortunately, there are laws that protect citizens who are victims of false arrest or policy brutality.
STANDING UP FOR VICTIMS OF POLICE MISCONDUCT
If you have been arrested without probable cause in New York City, we want to know about it! We have been filing civil rights lawsuits on behalf of false arrest victims for a decade. You may have a false arrest claim if your case was dismissed or you accepted an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal (ACD).
Wrongful arrests occur under a vast range of circumstances. Often times, false arrest is only one part of a valid case, with other wrongs having taken place too. Some cases we have pursued have involved:
- Traffic stops and “stop-and-frisk” encounters leading to false arrests;
- Arrests of people invited into a building by residents for trespassing after a report by the building owner, who may also be held liable;
- People arrested for crimes based on a vague description.
YOU MAY HAVE THE RIGHT TO SUE THE CITY OF NEW YORK OR THE POLICE OFFICERS THAT ARRESTED YOU FOR MONEY DAMAGES
An experienced NYC false arrest lawyer will tell you that if you want to bring state law claims against the City of New York, any action against the municipality in NYC requires a Notice of Claim to be filed within 90 days of the wrongful arrest or other civil rights violation. For federal causes of action, the statute of limitations is a more generous three (3) years. Your civil rights lawyer will discuss with you whether it is a better idea to file your case in State Court or Federal Court.
In an action for false arrest, a plaintiff must prove four elements. Plaintiff must show (1) that defendant intended to confine him (2) that plaintiff was conscious of the confinement (3) that plaintiff did not consent to the confinement; and (4) that the confinement was not otherwise privileged. Gebbie v. Gertz Div. of Allied Stores, 94 AD2d 165 (1983). The existence of probable cause must be determined on the basis of the totality of the circumstances. Maryland v. Pringle, 540 U.S. 366, 371 (2003). “When information is received from a putative victim, probable cause exists unless the circumstances raise doubt as to the person’s veracity.” Curley v. Vill. Of Suffern, 268 F.3d 65, 70 (2d Cir. 2001).
Under New York law, a plaintiff must establish four elements to state a claim for malicious prosecution: (1) “the initiation and continuation of a criminal proceeding against plaintiff; (2) termination of the proceeding in plaintiff’s favor’ (3) the lack of probable cause for commencing the proceeding; and (4) actual malice as a motivation for defendant’s actions.” Dellutri v. Village of Elmsford, 895 F. Supp. 2d 555, 569 (S.D.N.Y. 2012) (citing Jocks v. Tavernier, 316 F.3d 128, 136 (2d Cir. 2003)). The absence of probable cause “raises an inference of malice sufficient for a claim of malicious prosecution to withstand summary judgment.” Ricciuti v. N.Y.C. Transit Auth., 124 F.3d at 131. (2d Cir. 1997). “Any termination of a criminal prosecution, such that the criminal charges may not be brought again, qualifies as a favorable termination, so long as the circumstances surrounding the termination are not inconsistent with the innocence of the accused.”
If you have been a victim of a false arrest, contact Manhattan false arrest lawyer Michael J. Redenburg at 212-240-9465. He has more than a decade of experience and has handled over one hundred (100) false arrest and police brutality cases, trying cases to jury verdict.