Stop and Frisk: News and Publications

$614K Settlement for Excessive Force Following Illegal NYPD Stop-and-Frisk

In July 2016, New York City agreed to pay $614,500 to Jateik Reed in settlement for his brutal 2012 beating in the Bronx by 42nd Precinct NYPD officers. Reed was 19 in January 2012 when he and several friends were stopped and frisked; when Reed questioned the legality of his detainment, officers began beating him with their batons.

Investigation of the Baltimore City Police Department (USDOJ Civil Rights Division)

U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division

The United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division issues its August 10, 2016 report on the Baltimore Police Department's "pattern or practice of conduct that violates the United States Constitution and laws and conduct that raises serious concerns." The report condemns the BPD's unconstitutional stops, searches, arrests, its regular use of unreasonable force and overly aggressive tactics, and its pattern of racial, ablist, and gendered discrimination, among other areas in which the BPD fails to serve its community.

$5M Settlement in Milwaukee Illegal Strip Search Suits

On Tuesday, December 15, the City of Milwaukee offered a settlement of $5 million to 74 African-American residents who had filed a number of separate lawsuits over the city police's illegal strip and body cavity searches. Four officers were forced to resign after being convicted of crimes in connection with the searches, which the plaintiffs allege were approved and encouraged by the officers' superiors.

NYC Agrees to Settle “Central Park 5” Suit for $40 Million

Five men, who were exonerated in 2002 after being convicted and imprisoned for a highly sensationalized crime, agreed to a settlement of $40 million from New York City to resolve a long-fought civil rights lawsuit.

The lawsuit had accused the city’s police and prosecutors of false arrest, malicious prosecution and a racially motivated conspiracy to deprive the men of their civil rights, allegations which former long-term NYC Mayor Bloomberg denied and fought vigorously for more than a decade in federal court.

Mayor DiBlasio Announces that the City Will Settle the Stop and Frisk Lawsuits

Appearing at a press conference alongside some of the civil rights lawyers that only weeks earlier had been nemeses of the city and its legal department, Mayor DiBlasio announced, “We’re here today to turn the page on one of the most divisive problems in our city.  We believe in ending the overuse of stop-and-frisk that has unfairly targeted young African-American and Latino men.”  NYPD Commissioner Bratton shared the sentiment, saying "We will not break the law to enforce the law."

Debate - The Constitutionality of Stop and Frisk in New York City

David Rudovsky and Lawrence Rosenthal
University of Pennsylvania Law Review

Stop-and-frisk, a crime prevention tactic that allows a police officer to stop a person based on “reasonable suspicion” of criminal activity and frisk based on reasonable suspicion that the person is armed and dangerous, has been a contentious police practice since first approved by the Supreme Court. In Floyd v. City of New York, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that New York City’s stop-and-frisk practices violate both the Fourth and Fourteenth  Amendments. Professors David Rudovsky and Lawrence Rosenthal debate the constitutionality of stop-and-frisk in New York City in light of Floyd and Judge Shira A. Scheindlin’s controversial removal from the case.

A.G. Schneiderman releases Report on Arrests resulting from Stop and Frisk Practices

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman released a report today analyzing the New York Police Department’s stop and frisk program by studying and tracking the arrests that result from stops — the first such analysis of what happens to individuals and institutions following these arrests. While the constitutionality of the stop and frisk program has been the subject of litigation and significant debate, its efficacy has been less closely scrutinized; the Attorney General’s new report helps to fill that gap.

In analyzing close to 150,000 arrests that resulted from approximately 2.4 million stops between 2009 and 2012, the report concludes that roughly half of those arrests, or just three percent of stops, led to guilty pleas or convictions at trial. In addition, just 0.3 percent of stops led to jail sentences of more than 30 days, and 0.1 percent led to convictions for a violent crime. The report also finds widespread consequences for arrestees and criminal justice institutions, including litigation costs incurred by the city, and various harms even to individuals arrested for misdemeanors.

Advocating for Justice: Case Studies in Combating Discriminatory Policing

Nahal Zamani, Ian Head, Amanda Alexander, and Darius Charney
Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), reprinted with permission.
The CCR has long been active in the movement to address racial profiling, particularly in New York City. CCR has been combating systematic racial profiling by the New York City Police Department through both litigation and advocacy since the 1990s, and has worked with community groups, attorneys and activists both in New York and around the country on issues of police abuse and targeting of youth, people of color and other minority communities. In the summer of 2011, CCR interviewed civil rights and police accountability lawyers, advocates, grassroots activists and academics across the United States to inquire about their work addressing police misconduct, abuse and racial profiling practices. The Center also conducted background research on successful models for police accountability, transparency and oversight throughout the country. Center for Constitutional Rights