Interactions between the police and protestors could lead to unintended consequences. People may suffer injuries even when law enforcement officials had no intention of inflicting harm. Regardless, a Texas police department might face a lawsuit when someone faces medical bills due to improper or ill-advised conduct by the police. One example of such an incident occurred in Austin, where a supposedly non-lethal weapon injured a teenager.
The protestor and the bean-bag round
Less lethal impact munition rounds, such as bean-bag munitions, intend to disable someone without causing any fatalities. However, shooting someone with a bean-bag round does not mean the person won’t suffer any injuries. In Austin, a 16-year-old collapsed after a round hit him in the head. The teen underwent neurological testing to make further assessments about injuries and treatments.
Reportedly, the teen suffered from daily pain in the aftermath of the bean-bag round incident. Time will reveal whether the young person will suffer permanent problems from the non-lethal shooting.
Police and liability
The police are justified in using lethal and non-lethal force in many incidents. A lawsuit will likely follow when the police overstep their bounds and hurt someone. With bean-bag rounds, questions may arise about whether discharging the round was necessary. Investigations may examine where the round landed. Aiming and firing at someone’s head could be risky under any circumstances.
An investigation may reveal that the police lacked the justification to use force, even non-lethal force. Sometimes, the person hurt by the police may be hit accidentally or faces targeting due to mistaken identity. Both instances might leave the police liable for any harm inflicted. A lawsuit may follow when the victims seek compensation for their injuries or mental trauma.