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A Break Down of Stop and Frisk: 5 Facts of Living in Bloomberg’s New York



              The stop-question-and-frisk program, or “Stop-And-Frisk”, in New York City, is a New York City Police Department practice of temporarily detaining, questioning, and at times searching civilians and suspects on the street for weapons and other contraband. This policy began in 2002 and is continuing to this day. These policies include unwarranted searches of your premises and on the streets, being forced on a wall for invasive searches, and invasion of property. The rubric for these laws is now being debated whether or not they should implement in United States Virgin Islands Police Department.

  1. A Hugely Disproportional Number of Blacks and Latinos Are Stopped by the NYPD

Almost 90 percent of those stopped by the NYPD in 2011 were black and Latino. In a population of almost 8.55 million people it is quite a disparity. That being said almost 44 percent of New Yorkers are white with only 24 percent being African American and a combined 15 percent are other.


2. More Young Black Men Were stopped by the NYPD in 2011 than there were Black Men in New York City

3. Stop and Frisk Did Not Actually Work

  • After the turn of the decade in 2011, the Stop and Frisk policies became under scrutiny over apparent racial profiling. By 2017 90 percent of stops were of Latinos or African Americans between the ages of 14-24. Of those stops, 70 percent of them were deemed innocent in a court of law.
  • In 2011 only 10.5 percent of stops recorded actual “violent criminal activity.”
  • The NYPD argued the effectiveness of stop and frisk however according to the data there was only a slight increase in guns found.

4. Stop and Frisk In Some Cases Are Unconstitutional

When the Supreme Court deemed stop and frisk a legal practice, they set up a standard of “reasonable suspicion” under which cops “must be able to point to specific and articulable facts.” To rely on “inchoate and unparticularized suspicion or [a] ‘hunch’ ” is not permitted. In almost one out of three stops, according to The Center For Constitutional Rights, the NYPD fails to meet this standard:

Nearly 150,000 stops over the last six years are facially unconstitutional and lack any legal justification. All together, 30 percent of all stops are unconstitutional, underlining a severe lack of adequate officer oversight in the NYPD.

5. THE NYPD Faces Numerous Stop and Frisk Lawsuits

In the month of January alone, more than three dozen lawsuits alleging improper stop-and-frisks were filed, based on a Voice reading of the complaints. Extrapolated, that means that the city could be sued more than 400 times this year alone just on improper stops.

If each case settles for a minimum of $10,000, that’s at least $4 million in cost to taxpayers, not including the cost to the police department in work hours assembling the documents and removing cops from the street to be deposed, and the cost to the corporation counsel in paying lawyers to defend those cases.

With such mix results in New York, it comes into question whether or not the results would be any different in The Virgin Islands. It also puts into question whether or not the mental and physical tax will result in less crime as well.