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Force vs. Excessive Force

Posted on: April 10th, 2015 by Chicago Police Misconduct Attorney

Let’s make something clear. Police officers are allowed to use force to effect an arrest. They are not allowed to use excessive force, however. That would be a constitutional violation and a deprivation of 4th Amendment rights. What happened in South Carolina is despicable and atrocious and criminal. But it’s been happening for years. The difference now is that we all have mega pixel video cameras in our pockets at the ready. Police officers are now getting caught at what we all knew could happen when there are differing stories to events. Bad police officers will lie, they will hide evidence and plant evidence. In SC it was caught on tape. The shame of it is that time and time again we hear the same old story from nearly every police involved shooting: the officer was in fear for his life, the victim posed a threat of great bodily harm to other officers or the public, the victim reached for a weapon or tried to. Those are the buzzwords for the justification for the use of deadly force against a citizen. Utter those words and without video and a dead victim you likely have a justified shoot.