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NYPD report: Whites more likely to carry drugs and guns than minorities

Posted By Kristen Butler, UPI.com   |   May 22, 2013 at 3:01 PM
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The New York Office of the Public Advocate on Wednesday released a report based on publicly available NYPD 2012 crime data, which concluded that white people were far more likely to be carrying drugs or guns than minorities, despite making up a small proportion of targets in so-called "stop-and-frisk" searches.

The likelihood a stop of an African American New Yorker yielded a weapon was half that of white New Yorkers stopped. The NYPD uncovered a weapon in one out every 49 stops of white New Yorkers. By contrast, it took the Department 71 stops of Latinos and 93 stops of African Americans to find a weapon.

The likelihood a stop of an African American New Yorker yielded contraband was one-third less than that of white New Yorkers stopped. The NYPD uncovered contraband in one out every 43 stops of white New Yorkers. By contrast, it took the Department 57 stops of Latinos and 61 stops of African Americans to find contraband.

Despite the overall reduction in stops, the proportion involving black and Latino New Yorkers has remained unchanged. They continue to constitute 84 percent of all stops, despite comprising only 54 percent of the general population. And the innocence rates remain at the same level as 2011 -- at nearly 89 percent.

A class action lawsuit filed over the controversial search practice claimed NYPD disproportionately targeted young Black and Latino men. Arguments concluded Tuesday, with city attorneys saying that there is no evidence of racial discrimination. Clinton-appointed District Court Judge Shira Scheindlin is expected to issue a ruling in the coming weeks.

A separate report, also published Wednesday, showed that out of 532,911 stop-and-frisk searches in 2012, only 729 guns were found, but over 5,000 were arrested for private marijuana possession.

Despite being decriminalized city-wide in 1977, possessing marijuana within public view is an arrest-level offense, allegedly leading officers to demand people empty their pockets during searches in order to increase penalties.

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