I yelled at some park rangers an was arrested for a DUI. The DUI was dismissed at the motions hearing because there was no probable cause. I would like to get my money back from my attorneys fees and other expenses like lost work and traveling to Pueblo from Denver several times. Approximately $10000.00
Laws are in place to protect citizens from false arrest. Three requirements in the law for determining if the false arrest warrants a violation of the 4th Amendment. Typically this information is obtained by your attorney so affiliate with a Civil Rights lawyer TODAY
One of the things that caught my attention about your case was that it got "dismissed at the motions hearing because there was no probable cause." What that tells me is your lawyer did an excellent job for you and you should simply thank your lawyer for fighting for you. The District Attorney's Office believed there WAS probable cause to arrest you and that is why your case had to go to a motions hearing. In other words, you won and because you won that doesn't mean there was not a case against you it meant that your lawyer worked hard for you and convinced someone there was not enough probable cause.
Ann Toney, P.C. is a law firm in Denver, CO defending DUI, DUID, and marijuana drug charges.
Since I don’t know the specifics of your case, I will speak generally. When people claim that a member of law enforcement has falsely arrested them, they sometimes file a complaint alleging a violation of their civil rights. These civil rights lawsuits are known as “Section 1983” suits because they are named after the federal law, United States Code Section 1983, which authorizes them. These lawsuits are brought in federal district court.
A false arrest claim under federal law arises from the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution, which provides, in relevant part: "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated . . . ." A false arrest, therefore, involves the "unreasonable" "seizure" of a "person." This language has been interpreted over the centuries to prohibit an arrest without probable cause. The same definition is used under state law. Probable cause is the most important concept in false arrest cases.
What is "probable cause"? Probable cause means "information sufficient to support a reasonable belief that an offense has been committed by the person to be arrested." It simply means that the police officer had a "reasonable belief" that the person committed a crime. This is a very low standard, one that is usually satisfied by police officers who perform their jobs competently and in good faith.
For the police officer/defendant, the existence of probable cause is a complete defense to an action for false arrest, under both federal law and state law. If the police officer had probable cause, therefore, even if the person was innocent, the police officer (or the city) will not be liable for false arrest. This means that many claims for false arrest will be defeated in court, once the police officer shows the court the evidence he relied upon in arresting the plaintiff.
Of course, if the police officer's version of events is legitimately disputed by the plaintiff, or if the police officer is lying about what happened, or if the police officer's assessment of the situation was wrong, or if the police officer acted in bad faith, then the plaintiff may be able to show that there was no probable cause for his arrest; if so, the claim will be allowed to proceed. If your action in court is maintained, you could possibly negotiate a settlement with the officer/city’s lawyers, or go to trial and seek damages for for (1) loss of liberty, and (2) physical and/or emotional pain and suffering caused by the false arrest, and 3) actual damages.
Warning: In these types of cases, there are deadlines that must be met to preserve your rights. If you are seriously considering filing this type of case, consult an attorney who handles these types of cases as soon as possible.
The inevitable fine-print: The information and materials posted here are provided for general informational purposes only and are not intended to be legal advice. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Being general in nature, the information and materials provided may not apply to any specific factual and/or legal set of circumstances. No attorney-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. This is not intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney, especially an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. If you require legal advice, please consult with a competent attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.
I'm sorry to hear about this, and a local civil rights lawyer can certainly investigate. Avvo has a great lawyer finder tool to locate an attorney close to your home. Good luck.
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