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Brooklyn Legal Issues Blog

What constitutes false arrest?

Many people hear the term false arrest and immediately assume that the police can't be accused of this crime. They think that someone who commits a false arrest is an everyday citizen who locks someone in a room against their will, or literally arrests them with their own set of handcuffs. However, police can be guilty of false arrest, or false imprisonment, just like anyone else.

A false arrest occurs when someone arrests or detains an individual without the legal authority to do so. The second the arrest leads to the victim being in custody, the false arrest becomes false imprisonment. A police officer can be guilty of false arrest and/or false imprisonment if they exceed the legal authority bestowed to them.

Woman sues hospital after standing water causes her fall

While the following story didn't occur here in New York, it has all the hallmarks of a traditional and all-too-common slip and fall accident. It also highlights the most infuriating trend in the world of slip and falls.

A woman has sued University Healthcare Systems (which is doing business as Tulane University Hospital and Clinic) for an incident that occurred last summer. The woman says as she was walking on the plaintiff's property, she slipped in some standing water. The defendant did not do anything to warn the injured plaintiff of the standing water. Few other details have been provided in the source article, but there is enough here to understand what happened here.

Officer punches suspect, doesn't provide medical assistance

The Houston Police Department has been sued after an incident involving a suspect and a police officer left the suspect with a badly-injured face. There are many questions people have about how the police handled the situation.

According to the criminal complaint, the police officer and his partner pulled over a vehicle that allegedly ran a red light. When the people in the vehicle pulled over, the police got out and approached the car. They smelled "fresh marijuana," and asked the two people inside of the car to get out.

Police misconduct and excessive force are a problem for victims

You wanted to have a fun time with friends during the holiday weekend, so you stayed out later than usual. You knew more police would be on the roads and walking the neighborhoods because of the busy festivities, but you didn't expect one to stop you to question you.

As long as an officer is respectful of you when he or she approaches, there is usually no problem. However, in this case, you were directly accused of a crime you had no knowledge of and arrested on sight.

Mall of America site of ridiculous slip and fall incident

As we have talked about before, many restaurants and establishments fail to adequately address spills and liquids on the ground in a timely manner. As a result of this negligence, innocent people can suffer life-altering injuries. You do not need to look any further than the Mall of America. A story that dates back to 2010 is coming to light now as three people suffered slip and falls to the same spill area in less than nine minutes.

The incident involved a 10-year-old girl at the time. She slipped and fell on a clear liquid in the food court. Four minutes later, another person slipped and fell on the same spot. Around this time, mall staff finally came out and cleaned up the spill and placed a warning sign.

Woman slips and falls at Wal-Mart, files lawsuit

Wal-Mart is being sued by a woman who says she slipped and fell in one of their stores. The details are a bit vague in the incident, but the woman says she was in a Wal-Mart store and a substance on the ground caused her to slip and fall. The fall caused her injuries, but they were not explained or detailed in the source article. The lawsuit alleges that Wal-Mart failed to put up the appropriate signage that would warn patrons of a dangerous condition or a slippery surface.

The lawsuit also claims that Wal-Mart failed to clean the dangerous condition, and it claims negligence on the part of management. It seeks all reasonable damages as a result of the incident and the lawsuit.

City settles with woman who tripped and fell on sidewalk

In our last post, we talked about sidewalk accidents and the life-changing effects they can have on people. In that post, we detailed the injuries that can be suffered and why it is important to hold those who are responsible for the sidewalk liable for the defect in the sidewalk. Today, we have a real world example of this.

A woman sued the city of Santa Monica after she tripped and fell on some uneven payment on a sidewalk in 2015. The woman suffered a dislocated shoulder, which required surgery at a later date. According to city reports, the sidewalk was inspected and the inspector said there was only a one-inch differential between two panels of concrete. But it turned out to be two inches. The spot was one of 3,000 sidewalks that the city had reports on that were "in need of repair."

Sidewalk accidents can deal life-changing injuries

Walking along the sidewalk is one of the simplest acts, and it is something we take for granted. In fact, no one really even thinks about safely walking along a sidewalk anymore. It is just part of life. But not every sidewalk is safe, and as such, some people suffer terrible injuries when they are just going about their life. Unsafe sidewalks can cause the lives of innocent people to change forever.

Sidewalks will erode and break down over time. This can lead to cracks in the sidewalk that are unsafe, and if people step on these cracks, they could break their ankle or fall over and injure themselves in other ways. Furthermore, sidewalks may not be properly tended to by the businesses or buildings they are in front of. Imagine a snowy, icy day and a shop owner fails to clear the slippery sidewalk in front of his or her store. This would be a dangerous condition, and one the shop owner should address. If someone slipped and fell on the ice, the victim would have a strong case to make.

False arrests can happen to anyone, even entrepreneurs

If you use social media or watch any of the more popular network cooking shows, you're probably aware of subscription meal services. These companies send boxes of food and recipes to people, tailored to their family size, dietary restrictions and other preferences. There are several well-known subscription meal services, one of which is Blue Apron. Forbes values the company at roughly $2 billion. That financial success didn't protect one of the owners from facing police brutality and false arrest in 2014. It does mean, however, that this case of false arrest is being followed by the media.

Many times, complaints of false arrest get greeted with suspicion. People wonder why the person claiming false arrest didn't simply comply with law enforcement requests or wait patiently for everything to clear up. This case may highlight how law enforcement officials can and do use their authority for egotistical, unnecessary reasons. Simply questioning a law enforcement agent can sometimes result in charges of resisting arrest if an officer feels disrespected. When that happens, it is important that victims speak up and push back against these practices.

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