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What is the proper way to report police misconduct?

Los Angeles, CA |

I was wrongly arrested during a sting operation. I went to court and all charges were dismissed. However, I am angry because the police put a charge for driving without license when I neither drive nor do I have a car. Moreover, when I was arrested, the two officers agreed to put the license plate number of another car. Thus, when I got to court the PD showed me a license plate number that I did not know. Personally, I feel this is wrong, and police officers sometimes do this because they feel they can get away with this kind of misconduct.
Nevertheless, I need to know what is the best way to proceed according to the law.

Attorney Answers 5


  1. You can file a complaint with the department. That is the bare bones minimum. If you believe this was intentional on their part and not merely sloppy police work, you may want to consider consulting with an attorney that handles police misconduct/civil rights cases to discuss further.

    Keep in mind there are certain strict time limits to file a claim and/or lawsuit, so if you're serious añkit pursuing this, don't delay.

    The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case.


  2. You can report the conduct to the officer's supervisor, or you can contact Internal Affairs.


  3. The police department is required to have a procedure for complaints from citizens that allege misconduct (see Penal Code Section 832.5), so you could file a complaint with the department...

    THESE COMMENTS MUST NOT BE CONSIDERED LEGAL ADVICE. Comments made on websites such as Avvo.com are provided for information purposes only, and you should not base a decision to act or refrain from acting based upon this answer. The only way to determine how the law may apply to your particular situation is to consult with an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. Answering this question does not create an attorney-client relationship or otherwise require further consultation. That relationship is established by the execution of a written agreement for legal services. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference.


  4. The first thing you need to do is file a Government Tort Claim against the law enforcement agency who did this to you. Rarely do they result in a monetary settlement but it is a condition to filing suit against the law enforcement agency. I used to defense these kinds of cases when I was with LAPD.

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