Mississippi residents are entitled to protection from police abuse. This right is explicitly outlined in federal statute 42 U.S.C. Section 1983. For this reason, cases involving police brutality and misconduct are often commonly referred to as “Section 1983” cases.

If you have been the victim of police brutality/misconduct or misconduct from other state and local government officials, talk to a Mississippi civil rights attorney who will protect your constitutional rights that have been violated.


What Is Section 1983?

Section 1983 is a statute of federal law that gives individuals the right to bring a civil lawsuit against states and local governments when the individual’s constitutional rights are violated. This right extends to the employees of state and local governments. For this reason, Section 1983 frequently governs over civil rights lawsuits involving police brutality.


Who May File a Section 1983 Claim?

Any individual who has had their rights violated by state and local governments or their employees is permitted to file a lawsuit based on the language of Section 1983. These claims may be brought in either Mississippi state courts or federal court. Often, a Mississippi civil rights lawyer will advise clients involved in a high profile police brutality case to file in federal court. When a case gets plenty of national attention, federal courts are often the best avenue in the pursuit of justice.


Police Brutality and Misconduct

Section 1983 cases are frequently utilized to hold law enforcement accountable when they overstep their legal authority. Frequently, this means enforcing the Bill of Rights. Common examples of Section 1983 cases involve violations of the following amendments:

  • Fourth Amendmentclaims involving a citizen’s right to be free from illegal detention, false arrest, intentional police abuse and maliciously unlawful prosecution
  • Eighth Amendmentclaims protecting citizens from police brutality that results in “cruel and unusual punishment”
  • Fourteenth Amendmentclaims protecting citizens from deprivation of life, liberty or property when they have not received procedural due process

These are just a few of the ways a police officer or government official may deprive you of the constitutional rights you have been guaranteed as an American citizen. Additional examples of police misconduct that violate Section 1983 include:

  • Racial profiling
  • Engaging in or making a false arrest
  • Excessive force
  • Unlawful surveillance abuse
  • Verbal attacks
  • Corruption and bribery


The Need for a Dedicated Civil Rights Lawyer

If you are a Jackson, MS resident who has been a victim of one of these forms of police misconduct, you will need a civil rights lawyer in Jackson, MS who diligently fights to protect your rights. Section 1983 cases require detailed filing and a committed attorney who will take on the powers that be when they overstep their legal authority.

Depending on the specific facts of your case, a civil rights lawyer will help you pursue damages and monetary compensation for the following:

  • General damages that compensate you for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life and any mental anguish experienced
  • Punitive damages that punish government officials and police officers when they acted with reckless indifference to your constitutional rights
  • Special damages designed to compensate victims for medical bills, out-of-pocket expense and past and future lost wages

As a general rule, government officials will rarely admit that your constitutional rights have been violated. The case will need to go to court in all likelihood, and that is why you need a dedicated civil rights attorney who will speak on your behalf.

Maggio Thompson, LLP offers legal counsel and representation to victims of police misconduct who have had their civil rights violated. Contact our team for a legal consultation to discuss your Section 1983 case to hold police or other government officials responsible for their unlawful civil rights violations.