NYPD commissioner: Violent crime will go up without stop-and-frisk

Aug. 18, 2013 at 1:37 PM   |   0 comments

WASHINGTON, Aug. 18 (UPI) -- New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said Sunday that if the city's stop-and-frisk program is abandoned, more people will die.

Judge Shira A. Scheindlin of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan ruled Monday that the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk policy violates constitutional rights and called for federal oversight of the problem.

She said police officers stopped and frisked innocent people -- usually young minority men -- without any objective reason to suspect them of wrongdoing.

In an appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press," Kelly said the department plans to appeal the ruling because the "judge has indicted the entire New York City Police Department, 35,000 officers, of racial profiling on the flimsiest of evidence."

"You look at the expert for the plaintiff and what he found. He looked at 4.4 million stops over a 10-year period. He found 6 percent of them were, in his opinion, unjustified. In the trial itself, there were four plaintiffs, there were 12 witnesses, there were 19 stops," Kelly said. "The judge herself found that 10 of the stops met constitutional muster. There were some problems with the frisks, the judge pointed out. But this is very small evidence, a small amount of information to have such a sweeping finding."

He said that if the program is ended with the next mayor of New York, more people will die, pointing out that there are record-low numbers of murders in the city.

"Well, I think no question about it, violent crime will go up. And again, this is not a program. This is something that's integral to policing. This happens throughout America in any police jurisdiction. You have to do it. Officers have to have the right of inquiry if they see some suspicious behavior. So, I can assure you, this is not just a New York City issue; it's an issue throughout America. And this case has to be appealed, in my judgment, because it will be taken as a template and have significant impact in policing throughout America," he said.

Topics: Ray Kelly
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