Los Angeles & Orange County In-Custody Death and Injury Lawyer

Imagine being arrested and taken into police custody. You expect to be treated fairly and have your rights upheld, but instead, you endure excessive force, neglect, or abuse at the hands of those sworn to serve and protect. Tragically, this nightmare scenario plays out far too often in Orange County jails and prisons.

Our police brutality attorneys at Libra Law Firm have witnessed the devastating consequences of such injustices. Families torn apart by the loss of a loved one. Individuals left with life-altering injuries, both physical and emotional. The trauma is unimaginable, and the pain is compounded by a system that often fails to put to justice the persons responsible.

But support is available to survivors. At Libra Law Firm, we fight for the rights of those who have suffered in-custody injuries and of families whose loved ones died in jail or prison. We understand the complexities of these cases and use all our resources to fearlessly seek compensation for our clients. Talk to us today for a free case review and sound advice. Call Libra Law Firm at (888) 565-3214.

What Constitutes In-Custody Injuries and Deaths Due to Police Misconduct or Police Brutality?

It’s crucial to understand that being “in custody” does not necessarily require being held in a jail cell or prison. Any time an individual is detained by law enforcement or other government officials and not free to leave, they are considered in custody.

Individuals still have rights when they are in custody. These rights include protections under the Eighth Amendment against cruel and unusual punishment, and specifically, the right to be free from police misconduct. Failing to provide proper medical care, subjecting detainees to excessive force, or exposing them to unsafe conditions can constitute a violation of their constitutional rights. And when these violations cause injury or death to the detainee, they or their survivors may be able to make a claim against the violators.

Causes of In-Custody Injuries and Deaths Leading to a Civil Case

In-custody deaths and injuries can occur in a variety of settings, including jails, prisons, and during arrests or transportation. These incidents can result from excessive force, neglect, inadequate medical care, or other forms of mistreatment by law enforcement officers, correctional staff, or private prison contractors. Some common causes of in-custody deaths and injuries include:

  • Excessive force: Detainees or prisoners may be subjected to the excessive use of force, such as the improper use of restraints, spit hoods, pepper spray, Tasers, or other weapons, resulting in injuries or death.
  • Assaults by staff: Prison, jail, detention center, or police staff members may assault detainees or inmates physically, sexually, or emotionally, resulting in severe harm or death.
  • Failure to protect: Law enforcement or institutional staff may fail to protect individuals in their custody from assaults by other inmates or individuals, leading to injuries or loss of life.
  • Inadequate medical care: When inmates endure unreasonable delays or intentional denials of necessary medical treatment, they can suffer worsening conditions or preventable deaths.
  • Unsafe conditions: Imprisoning or detaining individuals in conditions where they may experience unreasonable harm – such as in extreme temperatures or unsanitary environments – can endanger their health and safety.
  • Inmate suicide: Detained persons can suffer suicide ideations and thus need adequate monitoring and mental health support. When the facility’s security is reckless or indifferent, it may contribute to detainees or prisoners taking their own lives.

Regardless of the cause, in-custody deaths and injuries represent a violation of the most fundamental human rights. They are a betrayal of the trust placed in those responsible for the safety and well-being of persons in custody.

Holding Institutions Accountable for In-Custody Death

It can be complex and challenging to pursue justice for in-custody deaths and injuries. Law enforcement agencies and correctional facilities often close ranks, making it difficult to obtain evidence and hold individuals accountable. Additionally, the legal system can be biased against those who have been incarcerated, making it even harder to achieve a fair outcome.

At Libra Law Firm, we understand these challenges and are equipped to navigate the complexities of these cases. Our experienced attorneys have a proven track record of success in holding institutions accountable for their actions or inactions that have harmed individuals.

We work tirelessly to gather evidence, leverage the law, and build a strong case on behalf of our clients. We are not intimidated by powerful institutions or their legal teams, and we fight relentlessly to ensure that our clients’ voices are heard and their rights are protected.

Government Liability for In-Custody Harm

The government has a legal duty to provide reasonable accommodations for the health and safety of individuals in their custody. This applies in police stations, juvenile detention facilities, immigration detention centers, prisons, and other locations where they detain people.

When the government fails in this responsibility, resulting in the injury or death of a detainee, they can be held liable for personal injury or wrongful death. In such cases, the responsible government agencies and personnel may be held civilly liable for damages, including medical expenses, pain and suffering, and wrongful death.

Seeking Justice and Compensation for In-Custody Death

While no amount of compensation can undo the harm or bring back a lost loved one, it can provide a measure of accountability and help families and individuals heal. At Libra Law Firm, we pursue compensation for various types of losses such as:

  • Medical expenses: Costs of treating injuries sustained while in custody, including hospitalization, rehabilitation, and ongoing care
  • Pain and suffering: Compensation for the physical and emotional trauma endured by the victim or their family
  • Loss of income: Wages or earning potential lost due to injuries or death
  • Punitive damages: Additional damages awarded to punish the responsible parties for egregious misconduct or negligence.

We understand that the legal process can be overwhelming, especially for those already dealing with the trauma of an in-custody death or injury. That’s why we provide compassionate support and guidance every step of the way, supporting our clients’ recovery while we advocate for their rights.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I file a lawsuit if my loved one died or was injured while in custody?

Yes, you may be able to file a civil lawsuit against the responsible parties such as law enforcement agencies, correctional facilities, or private prison contractors. These lawsuits can seek compensation for damages, including medical expenses, pain and suffering, and more.

What types of compensation can I seek in an in-custody death or injury case?

Depending on the circumstances of your case, you may be able to seek compensation for various losses including:

  • Medical expenses for treating injuries sustained while in custody
  • Pain and suffering endured by the victim or their family
  • Loss of income or earning potential due to injuries or death
  • Punitive damages to punish the responsible parties for egregious misconduct or negligence.

How long do I have to file a lawsuit for an in-custody death or injury?

The statute of limitations (the time limit for filing a lawsuit) varies depending on the specific circumstances of your case and the laws in your state. In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury or wrongful death cases is generally two years from the date of the incident. However, if your claim is against a government entity – such as a police department or a correctional facility – the deadline can be as short as six months.

It’s crucial to consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible to understand the timeline that applies to your case and avoid missing deadlines.

What evidence is needed to prove an in-custody death or injury case?

Proving an in-custody death or injury case often requires a combination of evidence including:

  • Medical records and autopsy reports
  • Witness statements from other inmates, correctional officers, or medical staff
  • Video footage from security cameras or body-worn cameras
  • Incident reports and internal investigations by the facility
  • Expert testimony from medical professionals or use-of-force experts.

An experienced attorney can help gather and analyze this evidence to build a strong case on your behalf.

Can I file a lawsuit if the criminal case against the responsible parties was dismissed or resulted in a not guilty verdict?

Yes, it is possible to pursue a civil lawsuit for in-custody harm even if the criminal case against the abusers was dismissed or resulted in a Not Guilty verdict. The standards of proof and legal requirements are different in civil and criminal cases, so a civil case may still succeed even if the criminal case did not.

How long does an in-custody death or injury lawsuit take?

The duration of an in-custody death or injury lawsuit can vary depending on the complexity of the case, number of parties involved, and willingness of the parties to settle. Some cases may be resolved within a year while others can take several years to reach a resolution through the court system.

Do I need an attorney to file an in-custody death or injury lawsuit?

While it is technically possible to file a lawsuit without an attorney, it is highly recommended to have experienced legal representation for in-custody death or injury claims. These cases can be complex, involving intricate legal issues and powerful institutional defendants. An attorney can navigate the legal process, gather evidence, negotiate with the other parties, and represent your best interests in court.

How much does it cost to hire an in-custody death or wrongful death injury lawyer?

Many wrongful death and injury lawyers, including those at Libra Law Firm, work on a contingency fee basis. This means you do not pay any upfront fees or costs. Instead, the attorney’s fees are calculated as a percentage of the compensation awarded in the case. If no compensation is recovered, you do not owe any attorney’s fees.

What should I look for in an Orange County in-custody death and injury lawyer?

When choosing an Orange County in-custody death and injury lawyer, it’s essential to consider their experience, track record of success, and commitment to their clients. Look for an attorney who has specific experience in the Orange County legal system and has won victories for harmed Southern Californians. Your lawyer should also demonstrate compassion, empathy, and a genuine dedication to fighting for justice on behalf of their clients.

Fighting for Justice in Cases of In-Custody Death or Injury

At Libra Law Firm, we are more than just attorneys – we are advocates for those who have been wronged by the very system that was meant to protect them. We believe that every individual deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of their circumstances. Our commitment to our clients extends beyond the courtroom, as we strive to connect them with resources and support services to aid in their recovery and empowerment. 

If you suffered an in-custody injury or have lost a loved one to in-custody death in Orange County, please reach out to us for a free and confidential consultation. Together, we can navigate the legal process and fight for the justice and compensation you deserve. Call us today at (888) 565-3214.

Scroll to Top