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Austin Lawsuit Cites "Excessive Force" by Police Officer

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A federal lawsuit made claims against a law enforcement officer in Austin, alleging that he used "excessive force" to subdue a suspect.

Last summer, several Austin police officers responded to a woman's call regarding a domestic dispute. At the scene, several of the officers aided the caller while another spoke to a next-door neighbor.

According to reports, the officer commanded the man to leave his apartment. When the neighbor declined, the officer allegedly kicked in the man's screen door and struck him with a Taser. The officer justified the attack, claiming that the man used "empty hand defensive resistance." He was arrested and accused of failing to obey a police officer's order, a charge that was later abandoned.

The lawsuit also mentions a string of situations where the same officer used questionable methods to subdue suspects. Additionally, the suit claims that the City of Austin failed to provide supervision and training for the officer.

Understanding "Excessive Force"

In the United States, there is no specific definition of excessive force. Thus, this term may have different connotations in different jurisdictions. Generally speaking, lawsuits cite excessive force when a police officer uses an unreasonable level of force to subdue a suspect. This unnecessary force can lead to serious injuries to the suspect.

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