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Rangel Applauds Court Decision Condemning Racial Profiling


Location: New York, NY

Congressman Charles B. Rangel issued the following statement after the decision was announced on the Stop and Frisk case in New York:

"I applaud Judge Shira Schneindlin's decision confirming that the New York City Police Department's "stop and frisk" tactics are discriminatory and violate the constitutional rights of minorities. Racial profiling eats away at the public trust, and this decision proved that it should not be allowed in any part of our great City and Country.

I am, however, disappointed that the Mayor and the Chief of Police continue to encourage unconstitutional behavior by refusing to "cease and desist" this unlawful tactic. The Mayor and the Chief have the right to disagree with Judge Schneindlin's decision, but they should comply with her order to stop the unconstitutional profiling of innocent New Yorkers.

New York has one of the greatest police forces in the country, but this ill-conceived policy has inflicted harm on hundreds of thousands of young blacks and Hispanics. Since the program began in 2002, almost 90 percent of people stopped were black and Latino, despite the fact that those groups only make up 52 percent of New York City's population. Of the 4.4 million stops made under this policy, only 264,000 -- less than 6 percent -- resulted in arrests.

More than 3.9 million innocent New Yorkers, many of them young minorities, have been targeted, stopped, and intimidated by police since stop and frisk began. Our youth should not be afraid of the police, and entire communities should not be targeted simply because the color of their skin. We need rigorous oversight so that we do not lose sight of civil rights and equality in pursuit of public safety. New York Police are the finest in the world, and they are here to protect all of us."

The lawsuit against New York City was filed in 2008 by four black men alleging they had been stopped and questioned or frisked by police without reasonable suspicion in violation of their constitutional rights.

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