According to an NYCLU announcement Thursday, the NYPD have now carried out over 5 million stop-and-frisks under Mayor Bloomberg, over 86 percent of which on black or Latino individuals. The analysis of police data also revealed that 88 percent of the stops did not result in an arrest or summons (and of course an even smaller proportion ever lead to a conviction).
“This disturbing milestone is a slap in the face to New Yorkers who cherish the right to walk down the street without being interrogated or even thrown up against the wall by the police,” said NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman. “The NYPD’s routine abuse of stop-and-frisks is a tremendous waste of police resources, it sows mistrust between officers and the communities they serve, and it routinely violates fundamental rights. A walk to the subway, corner deli or school should not carry the assumption that you will be confronted by police, but that’s the disturbing reality for young men of color in New York City.”
To stop a person lawfully, a police officer must have reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing or is about to commit a crime.
This year the racist stop-and-frisk practices have come under increasing scrutiny. Monday will see the beginning of a landmark trial -- a federal class-action lawsuit filed by the Center for Constitutional Rights challenging the constitutionality of stop-and-frisk practices. As HuffPo's Matt Sledge noted, the lawyers bringing the suit against the police believe it will be the "trial of the century."