Racial Profiling and Traffic Stops
Police departments all around the country have been accused of pulling drivers over for no other reason than their race. This practice, known as racial profiling, is fundamentally misguided and worsens the relationship between the police and the public. If you have been a victim of racial profiling, you may be able to recover damages for the unjust police actions that have affected your life.
Problems with Racial Profiling
A major problem with the use of racial profiling is the assumption that some groups of people are necessarily likelier to be criminals than others. A study on arrests in Maryland has suggested that the likelihood of a police officer finding illegal activity is equal across all ethnic groups. Stopping someone because of his or her race is simply illogical.
Some law enforcement personnel have attempted to justify racial profiling, pointing out that certain groups are likelier than others to be associated with certain crimes. However, this may simply be a self-fulfilling prophecy. If members of certain ethnic groups are more likely to be stopped and searched by the police, they are more likely to be arrested – whether or not they are more likely to commit crimes.
The United States constitution guarantees the right of anyone in this country to be safe from unreasonable searches and to be treated equally under the law. While it is illegal at the federal level to discriminate against suspects because of their race, many local police departments still operate racially motivated policies.
If you have been the victim of an illegal, racially motivated police encounter, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. To discuss your case with a compassionate Champaign defense lawyer, contact the law office of Bruno Law Offices today at (217) 328-6000.