Cape Girardeau, MO asked in Federal Crimes, Criminal Law and Family Law for Missouri

Q: If officers police reports are false with child endangerment allegations what can I do

He said she was 2 yrs old 2 blocks away unsupervised for 15-20 minutes she was almost 4 yrs old when it all happened she was playing in sand box and scooping dirt n rocks i was helping a new "friend" turning key of van he was working on and i stopped hearing her in the sad box and went to search buildings on property when i seen she wasnt inside any of the three buildings i walked on opposite side of house and seen her in some ladys arms in her front yard cop pulled up as i started tords her she was only 2 houses away able to see porch n front driveway where we were working on the van the lady said she was screaming mommy and nate but the distance from 219 and 230 heebe st. I would have Hurd her if she was they said she was crying and she wasn't she said she was dirty and stinky she was playing in sand box with puppies from 9 am till little after she had lunch we finished lunch n went to working on van moment later was arrested n daughter was taken n traumatized

1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth Chike Odiwe
Kenneth Chike Odiwe

A: Under Penal Code § 118.1 PC, police officers can be charged with a crime if they knowingly make a false statement in a report, regardless of whether the statement was made under oath. This offense can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Luckily, there are several things that can be done when an officer makes a false report:

1. Cross-Examine the officer – a criminal defense attorney would do this during a California jury trial. The lawyer would hopefully be able to make the officer provide information that is inconsistent with his false report.

2. File a Complaint – a person can file a police misconduct complaint with the officer’s department. If the person was charged with a crime because of the report, a complaint may result in the reduction or dismissal of the charges.

3. Run a Pitchess motion – a Pitchess motion is a request by the defense to access an officer’s personnel record. This access is sought to see if other people have complained about the officer committing similar misconduct in fabricating police reports.

4. Sue the Police – there’s always the possibility of filing a lawsuit against the police officer, his department and the city. This is usually only a viable option if a person can prove that the officer lied and that the false statement caused them to be wrongly arrested, convicted and/or jailed. Many of these lawsuits get brought under 42 U.S.C. 1983.

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