Rhode Island police have been disproportionately stopping minorities on the road and searching their vehicles more often than they do whites, state consultants studying racial profiling have concluded, the Providence Journal reports.
“Racial profiling should be a cause of concern in every community” in the state, said Jack McDevitt of Northeastern University, a consultant in the two-year study.
Police insist that they enforce the law without regard to race.
In a June 1 article, The Journal reported that the data showed some Rhode Island police searched vehicles driven by blacks and Hispanics as much as five times as often as those driven by whites.
Statistics and the names of specific police forces, which will be in the final report, were blacked out in a summary released yesterday. The study was ordered by the General Assembly and administered by the attorney general’s office.