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Photo Of Kyle B. Sawyer

Charged With A Crime? It Doesn’t Mean You’re Guilty.

Denver Police Brutality and Excessive Force – What to Do?

On Behalf of | Mar 30, 2016 | Police |

Denver Police Brutality and Excessive Force is Common

Denver Police account for 90% of the statewide reports of police brutality, excessive force and rights violations we hear about in our office. It appears inbred into the Denver Police Department that they hit, punch and slam people who verbally challenge them in any way. Maybe they are trained to abuse people. They think they are God, and hide behind their badges.

A recent case illustrates my opinion. Alex Landau was severely beaten by Denver Police officers following a traffic stop. Officers alleged he was going for their guns and beat him to unconsciousness. Of course, this ignores the fact that there was no reason Mr. Landau needed to be near a police officer’s gun or out of his car. Officers set up the conflict, beat the man, and then claimed it was a legitimate exercise of police power. No one really believes them. In 2011, the City of Denver paid out $795,000 to Mr. Landau. Yet even after this, the officers were not fired. It is no wonder citizens do not trust the Denver Police Department.

Should You Fight Back Against Denver Police Brutality?

The short answer is that you can resist the beatings of the Denver Police Department. But, you will usually lose the argument, unless they hurt you with lasting and obvious injuries or you have more witnesses than they do. You can claim self-defense if you fight back, but this is not easy to win as officers will lie to protect themselves.

Cooperating in a lawful arrest is required by law.  Even if you disagree or feel that you are being falsely arrested, you must allow police to arrest you. Police officers don’t feel it is their job to fully investigate a case. If they have a “victim” saying you did something wrong, legally they can arrest you and you will be charged with a separate crime if you resist.

Crimes Denver Police Will Charge You With: Resisting Arrest and Assault in the Second Degree

Resisting Arrest is the most common charge against people for protecting themselves from police excessive force and brutality. While this is a misdemeanor, you can still go to jail for a year under C.R.S. 18-8-103. The elements or definition of Resisting Arrest is:

1) knowingly prevents or attempts to prevent,

2) a peace officer,

3) acting under color of his or her authority,

4) from effecting an arrest,

5) by using or threatening physical force or violence against the officer, or

6) by using any other means that creates a substantial risk of causing bodily injury (pain) to the officer or another.

Assault in the Second Degree upon a police officer, located at C.R.S. 18-3-203, has a really steep penalty – mandatory prison. All that must happen is for the officer to allege that you caused him bodily injury, as he was performing a lawful duty. Bodily injury is defined as any type of pain. Nothing else is required for the officer to send you to prison. The Denver Police can beat you and then send you to prison.

Document Your Police Injuries Early and as They Develop

The best thing you can do after being beaten by Denver Police is to document your injuries. This may be the best way to get your criminal charges dismissed, or to get a civil settlement. Remember: officers will lie for each other. Often called the “blue code” or “code blue,” police in Denver will lie to protect one another. So, you need to be savvy enough to build your case of self-defense, and police abuse, from the beginning. Take quality cell phone or other camera photos at every stage of your injuries. Get witnesses to take pictures. Take them of your initial injuries and the bruising and scaring as you heal. Get the names and phone numbers of witnesses. Show your injuries to medical personnel and have them document everything. Get a doctor to verify your complaints and even get Xrays or photos at the doctor’s office.

Don’t Speak to Police Investigators – Can You Say “Cover Up”?

Denver Police investigators are still police. They will try and cover up excessive force or police brutality complaints. It is always best to get a criminal defense lawyer involved early on. We have the tools and understanding to look out for our clients’ best interests.

If you are beaten by police and accused of Resisting Arrest or Assault in the Second Degree, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent and call the best criminal defense attorneys at 303-731-0719. Together we can protect your future.

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