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Can i sue a law officer in state civil court for excesive force as a pro se litigant?

Rockford, IL |

I want to sue 2 sheriffs deputies in state civil court . I have the packet for federal court and would just like to know what is the best way to go about it pro se.

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Attorney answers 6

Best Answer

While you may be able to, suing a law enforcement officer pro se remains a very, very bad idea. Talk to a local lawyer, and do so right away. Actions against government entities and employees often have a shorter statute of limitations, so time is of the essence. Best of luck.

Matthew Paul Krupnick

Matthew Paul Krupnick


Joshua has put it very mildly.


There is no good way to go about suing sheriff's deputies pro se. You will not get very far on your own. If you have viable case, you should speak to any attorney about handling the case for you.


This is is a very bad idea, if you are going to embark on such a case, you should meet with an attorney experienced in goverment claims and civil rights cases. These types of cases have particular claims requirements and qualified and absolute immunitites. If you can't find a lawyer interested in your case, it may likely be a signal that it is a not good case or you don't have enough damages to justify the cost and time for a lawsuit? Good luck.

Legal disclaimer:This message does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any statements are made for general informational purposes and do not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client privilege is created by this communication. Attorney is licensed in California only.


I agree with my colleagues - it is not advisable to proceed pro se on that claim.

If this answer was helpful, please mark it as helpful or as a best answer. This answer is for general education purposes only. It neither creates an attorney-client relationship nor provides legal guidance or advice. The answer is based on the limited information provided and the answer might be different had additional information been provided. You should consult an attorney.


To answer your question, you need to draft a Complaint alleging viable legal theories against the Defendants and then file it with the Court. Then have each of the Defendants served with a Summons and a copy of the Complaint. That would get you started.

I agree with the others that you would be better off consulting with an attorney.

Good Luck.

Jeffrey L. Whitcomb
Whitcomb Law Firm, Ltd.


A SECTION 1983 lawsuit for violation of your civil rights is what you are thinking of.

Don't go pro se because you need an attorney for such a difficult

In short, you would have to prove that sheriff deputies were acting "under color of state law" even though their actions violated state law.

In other words, the liability will exist where a government official acted outside the scope of the authority granted to him by state law.

Numerous immunities apply, so the case would be very difficult.

The author provides the preceding information as a service to the public. Author's response, as stated above, should not be considered legal advice. An initial attorney-client conference, based upon review of all relevant facts/documents, will be necessary to provide legal advice upon which the client should then rely.



they flat out violated several of my contatutional rights very simply put and some one should hear what they did in my case. It may be illegal.

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