Grove, OK asked in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law and Libel & Slander for Texas

Q: Wanting to file lawsuit on company for wrongful arrest/termination - no investigation carried out

charged with and later dismissed due to lack of evidence

3rd degree felony with terroristic threats

event occurred in 2019, statue of limitations apply.

event occurred in a PRIVATE PROPERTY

event did NOT take place: caused impairment or interruption of public communication, public transportation, public water, gas, or power supply or other public place.

1 Lawyer Answer
John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
  • Employment Law Lawyer
  • Frisco, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: It seems the correct cause of action for your particular facts would be a lawsuit for malicious prosecution. In order to prevail, you will need to show the following:

1. A criminal prosecution was commenced against you

2. The defendant initiated or procured the prosecution

3. The prosecution was terminated in your favor

4. You are innocent of the charge

5. The defendant did not have probable cause to initiate or procure the prosecution

6. The defendant acted with malice

7. You suffered damages as a result of the prosecution

In most malicious prosecution cases, elements 5 and 6 are hotly contested.

Probable cause asks whether a reasonable person would believe a crime had been committed by you, given the facts as the defendant honestly and reasonably believed them to be before the criminal prosecution was instituted. When the objective elements of a crime reasonably appear to have been completed, probable cause is established as a matter of law.

Malice is usually established by proving the defendant had a wrongful or improper motive or was motivated by some purpose other than bringing a guilty person to justice, such as earlier bad relations or using the prosecution to recover property, extort money, or collect a debt.

The extent of any investigation by the defendant may be relevant evidence as to both of these elements. But a private company or individual is not required to do a thorough investigation before reporting a crime to police. That's the police's job.

With respect to the statute of limitations, you have one year from the date that the criminal prosecution was terminated in your favor to file your malicious prosecution lawsuit. The fact that the events leading to your arrest occurred in 2019 is not dispositive; the important date for limitations purposes is the date the charges were dismissed.

1 user found this answer helpful

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.