ACLU Calls on Baltimore Police to Monitor Use of "Stop and Frisk" Tactics

November 19, 2013

 

CONTACT: Meredith Curtis, Communications Director, 410-889-8555, media@aclu-md.org

 

The ACLU of Maryland called on the Baltimore Police Department (BPD) to begin to meaningfully monitor its use of "stop-and-frisk" tactics after reviewing BPD's response to the ACLU's Maryland Public Information Act request for records documenting BPD "stop and frisk" policies and practices. On September 23, the BPD provided a partial response to the ACLU's MPIA request and sought an extension of time to provide its full response.  On October 17, the BPD provided the rest of its response, stating, among other things, that BPD had conducted 123,121 stops in 2012, but the BPD database showed police searching only 494 of those individuals and recovering just 10 controlled dangerous substances, 9 guns, and 1 knife, and providing no additional documentation to explain the numbers.  The BPD's response illustrates that it lacks tracking mechanisms to readily analyze who is being stopped and searched, where they are being stopped and searched, why they are being stopped and searched, who is doing the stopping, and the outcomes of its stops and searches.

 

The ACLU also called upon BPD to comply with its obligations under the MPIA.

 

The following can be attributed to Sonia Kumar, staff attorney for the ACLU of Maryland:

 

"Everything about BPD's response - and lack thereof - to the ACLU's request for public records demonstrates that BPD has completely failed to supervise how officers deploy "stop-and-frisk" tactics against Baltimore residents, despite complaints about abuse of the tactic stretching back over a decade.  BPD needs to hold its officers and their supervisors accountable to policies already on the books, which it is plainly not doing now."

 

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