Officials Renew Call for U.S. Review of Stop and Frisk Policy

The case against a New York City police officer charged with falsely arresting a black man on Staten Island in April has given new attention to the call for a federal civil rights inquiry into the Police Department’s controversial stop, question and frisk policy.

At a news conference across the plaza from police headquarters in Lower Manhattan, public officials said that the case against the officer, Michael Daragjati, was emblematic of a police culture that disregarded the civil rights of young black and Hispanic men.

“He is not a bad apple,” said State Senator Eric Adams of Brooklyn, referring to Officer Daragjati. “We have an entire bad tree in the New York City Police Department that supports and condones the illegal stop, search and frisk of innocent New Yorkers.”

Senator Adams, a retired New York City police captain, said that he, along with other with other city leaders, had sent a letter to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. three months ago requesting a federal investigation, but had heard no official reply.

Scott M. Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, said that even though white New Yorkers were mostly unaffected by the department’s reliance on stop and frisk interactions, they have a responsibility to speak out.

“We can no longer ignore this as people who look like me.” Mr. Stringer said. “The city must come together on this issue, we must demand reform and it can’t just be the African-American and Latino brothers and sisters in this city.”

Nahal Zamani, of the Center for Constitutional Rights, suggested that not only did the stop, question and frisk policy violate the civil rights of New Yorkers, it also interfered with the ability of the police to fight crime.

“The policy contributes to mistrust and doubts of New Yorkers of communities of color that are already scarred by incidents of brutality, profiling and other major incidents of concern,” Ms. Zamani said.

But the chief Police Department spokesman, Paul J. Browne disagreed, noting that the “police stops save lives.”

Mr. Browne cited police statistics that suggested that it was the “minority community which benefited most from the 2,734 fewer murders in the first eight years of the Bloomberg administration compared to the prior eight.”

Powered By WizardRSS.com | Full Text RSS Feed | Amazon Plugin | Settlement Statement
Go to Source