NYPD’s Underreporting Of Stop-And-Frisk Continues Along With Severe Racial Disparities

NYPD is still engaged in racial profiling in how it conducts stops and frisks
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Photo: ACLU\YouTube

New York– In response to a report just filed by Mylan Denerstein, the court-appointed monitor in the landmark stop-and-frisk case Floyd v. City of New York, plaintiff attorneys issued the following comments:

“The NYPD cannot solve a problem when it does not understand its scale,” said Omar Farah, senior staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights. “And just like prior reports, this monitor report confirms that widespread underreporting persists, possibly masking significant, ongoing racial disparity in the use of stop-and-frisk on Black and Brown New Yorkers by the NYPD. Until the City corrects this threshold problem, we cannot have confidence that court-ordered reforms are having their intended impact.”

“The latest Monitor Report indicates that, despite all the reform efforts that have been made by the NYPD over the last eight years since the decision, the same problem exists: there is still a racial disparity in who gets stopped. The sad fact is that in the City of New York, eight years after the finding of liability by the court, the NYPD is still engaged in racial profiling in how it conducts stops and frisks,” said co-counsel Jonathan Moore of Beldock Levin Hoffman LLP.

Key findings of the report:

  • The NYPD continues to underreport stops. The underreporting of stops has been acknowledged by the monitor team and explicitly identified in NYPD audits. Any assessment of compliance with the court’s remedial orders will be impossible unless the NYPD finds ways to ensure that unreported stops are no longer a significant issue. If the NYPD’s data is not accurate and complete, the monitor cannot find that the City is in substantial compliance with the Floyd remedial order.
  • Racial disparities remain a prevalent issue. There are still disparities with Black and Latinx New Yorkers when the impact of unreported stops is considered. As the estimate of undocumented stops increased, the estimates for racial disparities also increased.
  • The monitor team’s review of stops indicates that supervisors routinely approved stops, frisks, and searches that the monitor team and the NYPD’s own auditing division determined to be improper. Supervisors need to take an active role in overseeing, managing, and, when necessary, correcting their officers for improper stops.
  • The court has directed the monitor to “prepare an in-depth study on the NYPD’s disciplinary systems, including the efficacy, fairness, and integrity of the City’s policies, practices, and procedures for handling police misconduct during stops.”

In August 2013, the Center for Constitutional Rights and co-counsel won a landmark ruling that found the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk practices to be racially discriminatory and unconstitutional under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. The court appointed a monitor to oversee reforms, including a joint remedial process intended to solicit substantive input from directly affected communities and other stakeholders.

The Center for Constitutional Rights works with communities under threat to fight for justice and liberation through litigation, advocacy, and strategic communications. Since 1966, the Center for Constitutional Rights has taken on oppressive systems of power, including structural racism, gender oppression, economic inequity, and governmental overreach.

Learn more at ccrjustice.org.

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