Critical Issues in Police Civil Liability:  by Victor E. Kappeler
259 pages, $44.95 list
Critical Issues in Police Civil Liability
Fourth Edition
Building on the strength of previous editions, the fourth edition presents a well-conceived, clearly stated analysis of complex issues confronting law enforcement officers and administrators. Law enforcement duties sometimes place police officers in vulnerable positions regarding their legal obligations and expose them to charges of misconduct. Civil liability is an extremely expensive proposition for police officers, law enforcement agencies, governments, and—ultimately—taxpayers. Although substantial resources are often expended by the justice system to resolve liability cases, there are benefits to citizens. When the government assumes the responsibility to provide service or to protect the public, people injured by inadequate performance of those responsibilities deserve compensation; innocent parties who suffer injury should have an avenue for redress. The potential for litigation has been an impetus for better training and more responsible practices.

Another excellent resource on the topic, Kappeler’s edited volume of Supreme Court cases, Police Civil Liability, Second Edition, allows students to understand firsthand the legal reasoning behind Court decisions dealing with these same issues.
“The work is straightforward, easily understood, and direct to the critical points of civil liability for law enforcement officers. It is comprehensive without being overwhelming in data and legal terms. A solid, practical resource.” — Butch Beach, Point University
Table of Contents
1. The Scope and Impact of Police Civil Liability
The Incidence of Civil Suit / Police Fear of Litigation / Frivolous Lawsuits / The Cost of Civil Liability / The Benefit of Civil Liability / The Process of Civil Litigation / Summary

2. The Fundamentals of State Tort Law
Police Liability and State Tort Law / Historical Barriers and Defenses to Police Liability / Summary

3. The Fundamentals of Federal Liability Law
The Civil Rights Act of 1871 / Municipal Liability under Section 1983 / Administrative Negligence and Deliberate Indifference / Municipal Liability for Failure to Train / Defenses to Section 1983 Lawsuits / Summary

4. Civil Liability for Police Use of Excessive Force
Excessive, Deadly, and Nondeadly Force /State and Federal Claims / Federal Standards Governing the Use of Deadly Force /Standards Governing the Use of Nondeadly Force / Liability for Indirect Excessive Force / Failure to Intervene / Summary

5. Police Civil Liability for High-Risk Drug Enforcement Operations
Search and Seizure Law in Drug Operations / Drug Detection and Probable Cause / Summary

6. Police Liability for Failure to Protect: Abandoning Citizens in Dangerous Places and Situations
Governmental Liability for Third-Party Criminal Victimization / Abandoning Vehicle Occupants and Qualified Immunity / Assurances of Police Protection / Case Analysis / The Future of Federal Third-Party Liability Cases / Summary

7. Police Civil Liability for Negligent Pursuits
Statutory Immunities / Negligence Principles and Police Pursuit / Defenses to Negligent Operation / Summary

8. Police Civil Liability for Failure to Arrest Intoxicated Drivers
Barriers to Liability / The Public Duty Doctrine / Special Relationship / Summary

9. The Liability of Traffic Officers: Negligence at Accident Scenes
The Duty to Warn and Protect / The Duty to Render Assistance / The Duty to Investigate Accidents / The Duty to Secure Accident Scenes / Summary

10. Police Liability for Failure to Prevent Detainee Suicide
The Framework of Negligence Litigation / The Special Duty of Care / Police Conduct and Breach of Duty / Defenses to Detainee Suicide / Summary

11. Shifting Conceptions of Police Civil Liability and Law Enforcement
Legal Assumptions and Police Civil Liability / Police Innovation and Liability / Implications for the Future Police Executive