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Chicago police agree to ACLU evaluation of stop-and-frisk

By Danielle Haynes
Chicago police agree to ACLU evaluation of stop-and-frisk
The Chicago Police Department has agreed to an evaluation of its stop-and-frisk procedures after an ACLU report found the city's practice unfairly targets African-Americans. Photo by Ilya Andriyanov/Shutterstock

CHICAGO, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- The Chicago Police Department has agreed to evaluate its stop-and-frisk procedures after complaints it was using the tactic to unfairly target African-Americans.

The department, along with the city, agreed to the review after the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois published a report in March raising concerns about the legality and constitutionality of investigatory stops.

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"When we issued our report a few months ago, it included a series of recommendations for change by the Chicago police," Harvey Grossman, legal director for the ACLU said Friday. "This agreement incorporates the bulk of those recommendations, and reflects the types of agreements that have been reached in other communities only after a long, protracted period of investigation and litigation. What we have done here is move past the litigation process and advanced directly to a collaborative process, to insure that stops on Chicago streets meet constitutional and legal standards."

Former U.S. Magistrate Judge Arlander Keys will be involved in evaluation the police department's use of stop-and-frisk and overseeing any changes that come about as a result of the review. The city has also agreed to collect data about and stop-and-frisks conducted going forward to determine if the police department's actions are lawful.

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"As the men and women of the Chicago Police Department work to make our city safer and identify the small subset of individuals who torment our neighborhoods with violence, it is imperative that we use every tool and resource in a way that is not only lawful but respectful of the residents we serve," said Chicago Police Superintendent Garry F. McCarthy. "We believe policing in Chicago must be strictly based on crime data, patterns, statistics and community intelligence, and this unprecedented agreement with the ACLU is a demonstration of CPD's commitment to fairness, respect, transparency, and underscores our willingness to work side by side with everyone as we work toward our shared goal of keeping our neighborhoods safe."

The ACLU said Chicago police stop a "shocking number of people," 250,000 of which did not result in an arrest in the summer of 2014 alone. African-Americans were subjected to 72 percent of all investigative stops but make up 32 percent of the city's population, the report found.

The report also accused the police department of not keeping adequate data about stop-and-frisks, making it impossible for supervisors or the public to identify bad practices.

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