Can I sue a person for giving a false report to police that had me arrested?

Asked almost 2 years ago - 30501

I was found innocent by a Judge and charges dismissed. My ex and his new wife did this as a means of gaining child custody. My ex did this on our first custody battle as well. To make matters worse, the local police did this as a favor to my ex as well as the Prosecutor. The police did not show up for court and the accusser admitted on the stand that I did not do what she had accused me of doing. The Prosecuter also lied to the Judge about a tape recording he asked her to listen too from me that had my ex and his wife threatening to lock me back up if my daughter went to court with me. This recording and threat was to our 16 yr old daughter who caught it on her phone as they were threatening her and defaming her... The Prosecuter told the Judge it was not so.. I was representing myself

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Jonathan P. Sexton


    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyer agrees

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    Answered . It is very difficult to sue the police for a civil rights violation such as you are alleging because all they need is arguable probable cause to make an arrest. However, there may be causes of action against your accusers for malicious prosecution, false imprisonment and false swearing. However, you would be suing individuals which could make the likelihood of recovery after obtaining a judgment difficult making it unlikley that you coudl find an attorney to take this case on a contingent fee basis vs an hourly basis. The facts are not sufficient to respond in more detail.

    The above is just my opinion based upon the limited facts provided. It is not intended to be offered as legal... more
  2. John Arnold Steakley

    Contributor Level 19

    Answered . It is much easier to sue a civilian who initiated criminal charges against you than to sue an officer, prosecutor or judge, as they are public employees who enjoy "qualified immunity" for most suits that arise out of how they do their job. Even then, though, malicious prosecution suits are difficult to navigate through and have lots of pitfalls. I would not try to do it on your own.

    You also have the problem if whether the person you want to sue is actually worth suing. The old saying that "you can't get water from a stone" is true. If you have been wronged by someone who has no assets, it doesn't do you much good to sue them because they have nothing worth taking.

    Even if they have assets, are your damages substantial enough to sue over? You were arrested, but for how long? Did you lose your job over it? When it comes time to put a dollar amount on your damages, what are they?

    Do not spend dollars to chase dimes. If what you are after isn't worth the cost of pursuing it, you are better off without it.

    ↓ Mark this answer as "Helpful" or "Best Answer" if you like it. For more information, contact us at www.... more
  3. Rixon Charles Rafter III

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . You can sue anyone for anything--question is will you prevail and will you recoup your costs. Getting found not guilty (which is different from being innocent) is not grounds to sue someone. If there was a false report the police may charge the person who filed the charge. In short, I do not believe you have a case, on the few facts you provided.

    READ THIS BEFORE CALLING OR EMAILING ME: I am licensed to practice before the state and federal courts in Virginia.... more

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