The New York Civil Liberties Union presented a report that concluded that since Mayor Eric Adams assumed office, the NYPD has conducted tens of thousands of pedestrian stops were only 5% of those stopped were white. This data also revealed even more pronounced racial disparities than during the controversial "stop and frisk" period under former Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
While the practice significantly decreased under Mayor Bloomberg's final year and further under Mayor Bill de Blasio, the trend has shifted upward under Mayor Adams, who campaigned on public safety.
Despite the decline in total stops compared to the peak "stop and frisk" years, racial profiling remains just as prevalent. The NYPD stopped 8,502 pedestrians in the first half of 2023, which is lower than the nearly 700,000 stops during the peak in 2011. However, 72% of Black and Latino pedestrian stops were deemed "innocent" compared to 40% of white individuals.
The NYPD argues that stops are based on officers' observations and "increasing levels of precision" following the precedent established by the U.S. Supreme Court's Terry v. Ohio case(known as the "stop and frisk" case). However, critics, including Chris Dunn, NYCLU's legal director, express concern over racial profiling and unwarranted stops disproportionately affecting Black and Latino communities.
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