Class-action suit approved in NYPD stop-and-frisks

Posted on May 17th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

New York CityFederal Judge Shira A. Scheindlin on May 16 approved a class-action lawsuit challenging the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk tactics, saying she was disturbed by the city's "deeply troubling apathy towards New Yorkers' most fundamental constitutional rights." The decision provides potential legal recourse for hundreds of thousands have been caught up in the department's aggressive stop-and-frisk practice, which has resulted in hundreds of illegal cannabis arrests and critics say unjustly targets Blacks and Latinos.

Despite an warning to patrol officers by Police Commissioner Ray Kelly in response to the controversy last year, the NYPD disclosed days before Scheindlin's ruling that officers had made more than 200,000 such stops in the first three months of 2012—placing the administration of Mayor Michael Bloomberg on course for the largest number of annual stops in the 10 years the department has been measuring them. Some 150 New York moms, clergy and community leaders marched on One Police Plaza May 12 to protest the biased police practices. 

In granting class-action status to the case, which was filed in January 2008 by the Center for Constitutional Rights on behalf of four plaintiffs, Scheindlin said that she was giving voice to the voiceless. "The vast majority of New Yorkers who are unlawfully stopped will never bring suit to vindicate their rights," she wrote.  (NYT City Room blog, May 16; Black Star News, May 13)

The day after Scheindlin's ruling, Kelly unveiled new measures intended to reduce the frequency of illegitimate stops.

The measures, which were outlined in a letter to the City Council speaker, Christine Quinn, include a re-emphasis on the existing departmental order banning racial profiling. The order is to be incorporated in routine training sessions for officers beginning next month, with an early-warning system to be established to identify officers who have received public complaints. Quinn called the planned changes an "important step forward," but added that more needs to be done. (Reuters, NYT, May 17)




Federal judge rules against "stop-and-frisk"

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Manhattan Federal Court Judge Shira Scheindlin ordered police to refrain from stopping trasspass suspects outside private residential buildings — even if the landlord has given officers permission to do so as part of the NYPD’s “Clean Halls” initiative, officially known as the Trespass Affidavit Program.

"While it may be difficult to say when precisely to draw the line between constitutional and unconstitutional police encounters such a line exists, and the NYPD has systematically crossed it when making trespass stops outside buildings," Scheindlin wrote in a 157-page ruling. (Daily News, NYT, Jan. 8)


Comment by Global Ganja Report on Jan 8th, 2013 at 9:02 pm

Federal judge allows NYPD to resume "stop-and-frisk"

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 Judge Shira Scheindlin on Jan. 22 lifted her order that had required the NYPD to stop using a "stop-and-frisk" practice outside of apartment buildings in the Bronx. Scheindlin agreed with city lawyers that complying with the order would place an undue burden on the NYPD to train thousands of officers and their supervisors, and that "it may be difficult to say where, precisely, to draw the line between constitutional and unconstitutional police encounters." (Jurist, Jan. 24)

Comment by Global Ganja Report on Jan 24th, 2013 at 3:39 pm

Judge grants class action status to "stop-and-frisk" challenge

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 A judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of New York  on Feb. 11 granted class action status to a lawsuit brought to stop the NYPD from continuing its "stop-and-frisk" practice outside of apartment buildings in the Bronx. In the first part of her legal analysis, Judge Shira Scheindlin found that the plaintiffs, all of whom are African-American and Latino residents of New York City, possess proper standing for such injunctive relief under Article III of the US Constitution because the "frequency of alleged injuries inflicted by the practice...creates a likelihood of future injury sufficient to address standing concerns." She added that the risk of future injury to the plaintiffs from the stop-and-frisk program is "real and immediate." (Jurist, Feb. 13)


Comment by Global Ganja Report on Feb 16th, 2013 at 1:24 am

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