November 2, 2013
President Obama endorsed New York Mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio will stand-down to the 2nd District US Circuit Court of Appeals decision that allowed the New York Police Department (NYPD) to “stop-and-frisk” residents based on racial profiling.
A monitor to ensure that changes to the police tactic were implemented was part of the ruling.
De Blasio explained he was dropping objections to the ruling.
Current New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg decried: “For the next 60 days, we don’t want an outsider coming in who doesn’t know anything about crime fighting, putting the lives of our police officers and the lives of the public on the line.”
Bloomberg continued: “[Police officers have] had their names dragged through the mud over the past year and I think they deserve a lot better than that. We want them to understand that we support them and we are in conformity with the requirements of the law.”
For every 9 African-Americans and Hispanics the NYPD stops-and-frisks, they arrest one .
Eric Schneiderman, New York Attorney General, expects that “given that precincts with elevated crime rates have predominately minority populations, some disparity is to be expected.”
US District Court Judge Shira Scheindlin explained in a 195 page decision that “a police department may not target a racially defined group for stops in general—that is, for stops based on suspicions of general criminal wrongdoing—simply because members of that group appear frequently in the police department’s suspect data.”
With data provided from 4.4 million police stop-and-frisks from 2004 to 2012, it was determined that a minimum of 200,000 were enacted based on something other than reasonable suspicion.
Looking for weapons carried by New York resident minorities resulted in 52% of the 4.4 million stop-and-frisks.
In addition, officers were pressured by department heads to increase their stop-and-frisks. This implied that racial factors were involved because “supervisors routinely reviewed the productivity of officers, but did not review the facts cited to justify such stops to determine whether they were legally sufficient.”
Scheindlin added: “An unwritten policy for police to target ‘the right people’ for stops. This is a form of racial profiling. While a person’s race may be important if it fits the description of a particular crime suspect, it is impermissible to subject all members of a racially defined group to heightened police enforcement because some members of that group are criminals. The equal protection clause does not permit race-based suspicion.”
It was revealed how the “poor police training by citing differing testimony on what constituted furtive movements used to justify stops. One officer said it could mean changing direction, walking a certain way, being fidgety, stuttering, looking back and forth, adjusting a hip or belt, grabbing at a pocket, acting a little suspicious, going in and out of a location, and moving into and out of a car too quickly. Another said it could mean hanging out in front of a building or sitting on benches and then making a quick movement, such as bending down or going inside the lobby, or suddenly becoming very nervous and very aware.”
Scheindlin said: “If officers believe that the behavior described above constitutes furtive movement that justifies a stop. then it is no surprise that stops so rarely produce evidence of criminal activity.”