Blacks and Latinos were nine times as likely as whites to be stopped by the police in New York City in 2009, but, once stopped, were no more likely to be arrested, reports the city’s Times. The more than 575,000 stops of people in the city, a record number of what are known in police parlance as “stop and frisks,” yielded 762 guns. Under Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, the use of such street stops has more than quintupled, fueling not only an intense debate about the effectiveness and propriety of the tactic, but also litigation intended to force the department to reveal more information about the encounters.
The Center for Constitutional Rights said its analysis of the 2009 data showed again what it argued was the racially driven use of the tactic against minorities and its relatively modest achievements in fighting crime. Police officials vigorously praise the stop-and-frisk policy as a cornerstone of their efforts to suppress crime. The stops led to 34,000 arrests and the seizing of more than 6,000 weapons other than guns, according to the center's analysis.