It is no secret that police officers in Southern California have dangerous jobs that require them to be fully committed to public service, while they are commonly criticized for simply doing their jobs. But we know that some officers may not always exhibit the commitment we expect for our law enforcement community.
So when an officer is accused of a sex crime or domestic violence, it is reasonable to question what is worse: the career implications or the potential for civil and criminal sanctions?
Some may not believe it, but a domestic violence or sex crime accusation can severely damage police officer’s career. Indeed, officers are afforded the same constitutional protections that other defendants enjoy, and criminal charges may not go forward. But given the social stigma that comes with these crimes, it is not surprising if a law enforcement agency wants to move on from the officer.
Even if an officer does not face criminal charges, an aggrieved party may also seek civil remedies in the form of monetary damages. The burden of proof is lower in civil court, so it is possible that an officer’s financial wellbeing may still be in jeopardy.
For these reasons, the guidance and advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney is essential. A skilled lawyer can assess the situation, advise you of all of your rights and options (legal and administrative) so that you can focus on putting a bad situation behind you.
The preceding is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.