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I Think My Lawyer Needs Help

Discussion in 'Accidents, Injuries, Negligence' started by kathi881, Dec 5, 2004.

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  1. kathi881

    kathi881 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I have a claim against the City of New York. I was arrested for disorderly conduct. A cop was double parked blocking traffic with his patrol car talking to a friend. As I drove past him, I told him he should move. Forgetting something at the store, I made a K turn and drove past him again going the other way. As I went by, he yelled out of his window "do you want a piece of this?" I turned the corner and parked my car. I got out of my car and walked in the direction of the patrol car.

    He rolled down his window and asked me what my problem was. I said "you're the problem. Look behind you, you're obstructing traffic." To make a long story short, he placed me under arrest for disorderly conduct and put me in the back of the patrol car. I asked the officer numerous times why I was being arrested and he said “it‘s a slow night.”

    I obtained an attorney and he filed a claim on my behalf against The City of New York. The charges include violation of my first, fourth, eighth and twelfth amendment rights. The total amount of damages he requested was $12 million.

    Approximately one year later, I encountered the same officer outside of a candy store on Bainbridge Avenue in the Bronx. As I walked past him, I glanced at his name. He asked me what I was looking at and I told him “your name.” He followed me into the store and pushed his stomach and chest up against me and just stood there. I asked him if he wanted to get by and he said no. I asked him to back up and he continued to stand there. I asked him if he knows what assault is and he replied “yes.” I was once again, stunned by his behavior.

    I filed a complaint with Civilian Complaint Review Board. They sent investigators to my home and they ultimately decided my case was unfounded. I later learned that they improperly categorized my complaint as Physical Force when in reality it should have been categorized as Abuse of Authority. Go figure.

    I told my lawyer about the incident but he didn’t feel it was necessary to add it to my claim against The City. I don’t get that. It seems that would be a good part of the case.

    On November 29, 2004 my case was finally heard. Instead of asking for $12 million he asked for peanuts ($50,000). I know $12 million was a ridiculous amount of money but I also feel that $50,000 is too low of an amount.

    The City countered with an amount of $2,000. The disorderly conduct ticket was dismissed when I appeared in court in January 2000. At the November hearing, my attorney did not have a "Certificate of Disposition" and he says that's why The City countered with such a low amount. I learned a couple of days later that he had the Certificate of Disposition in my file but he forgot to bring it to the hearing.

    My claim has now been postponed until June 13, 2005. My lawyer requested a trial hearing.

    My lawyer didn't tell me that he planned to ask for $50,000. I would have disagreed and asked for $100,000.

    My question is this: Even though he has already asked for $50,000, when the Certificate of Disposition is produced can I ask for an increase to $100,000 or am I bound to the $50,000 because that's what he already asked for? If I am bound to the $50,000, can I just take it to trial?

    I also want to know if I can retain another lawyer so they can both represent me.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this. I appreciate whatever advice I can get.


    Happy Holidays To All!

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