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Federal Judge rules NY police use of stop-and-frisk tactics unconsitutional

ABA Journal, Debra Cassens Weiss “A federal judge in Manhattan has ruled that New York police violated the Constitution when they targeted “the right people” with stop-and-frisk tactics. Minorities were disproportionately targeted under policies that encouraged more police stops to combat crime, U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin wrote in a 195-page decision (PDF). “A police department may not target a racially defined group for stops in general—that is, for stops based on suspicions of general criminal wrongdoing—simply because members of that group appear frequently in the police department’s suspect data,” she wrote. Scheindlin found violations of the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches and the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. As a remedy, the judge appointed lawyer Peter Zimroth of Arnold & Porter to monitor police conduct. He is a former corporation counsel for New York City and former chief assistant district attorney in Manhattan.”

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