Did New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly Use the City’s Stop and Frisk Policy to Intimidate Blacks and Latinos?
Date:  04-03-2013

New York State Senator Eric Adams says “yes,” Kelly says “no”
On May 31, 2012 Reentry Centralposted the article New York City with 4,500,000 Incidents of “Stop and Frisk" Earns Dubious Distinction as the City with the "Most Massive Local Racial Profiling Program in the Country.” The article reported:

The New York ACLU states that nine out of ten people who were stopped and frisked by the police in NYC since 2002 were innocent . In a breakdown of stop and frisk statistics going back to 2002, the ACLU found that the number of people stopped in frisked by police rose from 97,296 in 2002 to an astounding 685,724 in 2011. The NY ACLU provided the following information on the first three months of 2012:
  • In the first three months of 2012, 203,500 New Yorkers were stopped by the police.

  • 181,457 were totally innocent (89 percent).

  • 108,097 were black (54 percent).

  • 69,043 were Latino (33 percent).

  • 18,387 were white (9 percent).

    In an on-going trial in a Manhattan federal courtroom, opponents of New York City’s stop and frisk policy are asking that the Court to declare that the policy is unconstitutional. Testifying on April 1, New York State Senator Eric Adams claimed he was at a 2010 meeting to discuss the stop and frisk policy with former Governor David Patterson and New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, when Kelly allegedly stated that black and Latino males were targets of the stop and frisk policy because he wanted to” instill fear in them.”

    According to WYNC, Adams spoke outside of the courtroom telling reporters that Kelly “indicated that, you know, the reason they focus or target on Black and Hispanic youth is because he wants to instill fear that every time they leave home they could be stopped and searched,” I was shocked, I told him that I believe it was illegal and that that was not what stop and frisk was supposed to be used for.” Kelly vehemently denies ever saying that.

    New York City’s stop and frisk policy has been viewed by many as racist. The statistics associated with the policy show that blacks and Latinos were more likely to be stopped and frisked than whites. The question now is will Kelly’s alleged comments further destroy the already strained relationship between New York City’s communities of color and the police? Will Kelly ever be able to convince New York City residents and the world that he never made such an outrageous and racist statement? Kelly is known for not backing down from a challenge. We can expect to hear more from him as he defends his honor and integrity.
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