Stop and Frisk

For decades, Black and brown men have been faced with a harsh reality: somewhere in life, they'll probably be stopped and searched, embarrassed and humiliated, most times for no reason at all. In our communities, this is a known fact. But now we have statistics to prove it. In recent months, New York's infamous "stop and frisk" law (which began in the 1990s under then-mayor Rudolph Guiliani) has ignited serious controversy, from protests and rallies to talks of "cop watch" groups and a federal class action lawsuit (which means that hundreds of thousands of stop-and-frisk victims could potentially join a case that was filed in 2008 on behalf of four Black men). Reports show that the practice targets Black and Hispanic males, with nearly 87 percent of last year's stops involving these two groups. And according to the New York Civil Liberties Union, the number of Black men (ages 14–24) stopped in 2011 exceeded the city's entire population of Black men in that age group. Other cities like Philadelphia have adopted this controversial policy and stirred more questions about its effectiveness. New York City officials claim that it has played a significant role in reducing crime in the Big Apple, while others believe that the stop-and-frisk policy does nothing more than promote legal discrimination and racial profiling. In 2013, U.S. District Judge Shira Sheindlin ruled the procedure unconstitutional and called for its overhaul.

The Latest on Stop and Frisk

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Report: Boston Police More Likely to Stop Blacks

The American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts report released on Oct. 8 says Boston's black residents are more likely to be stopped, questioned or searched by police.

Report: Black Youth Are Viewed as Less Innocent

A UCLA professor conducted a study about negative attitudes toward black youth, especially by police.

Bring That Week Back: Tamron Hall Becomes First Black Woman to Co-Host Today

Black pastors coalition seeks to impeach Attorney General Eric Holder, an African-American memorial in D.C. to be renovated, plus more news.

NAACP Sees Some Success With Its “Trayvon’s Law”

The NAACP says it is seeing modest activity in its criminal justice reform package known as "Trayvon's Law."

In New York, Stop and Frisk Is Being Reformed, Perhaps Not Overnight

Mayor Bill de Blasio has followed up on his campaign promises to reform stop and frisk, but there remains some resistance to change.

Philadelphia D.A. Investigating Teen's Claim That Cop Injured His Genitals

The Philadelphia D.A. said Thursday that his office will be investigating the claim of Darrin Manning, a 16-year-old who said a cop mutilated his genitals during a brutal stop-and-frisk.
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