Charlottesville Expected to Create Board to Tackle Police Stop & Frisk Issue
The Charlottesville Police Department is under scrutiny regarding the number of stop and frisk incidents conducted by city officers.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Charlottesville Police Department is under scrutiny regarding the number of stop and frisk incidents conducted by officers.
Thierry Dupuis, the interim police chief, recently presented Charlottesville City Council data from 2017: There was a total of 125 stop and frisks in the city, mostly on African-Americans.
"Those statistics show that there's been some racial profiling," said attorney Jeffrey E. Fogel.
"It's just obviously begging for a lot more questions to be answered," councilor Heather Hill said.
According to Dupuis, 91 of the people stopped were black, 33 were white, and one was Asian. The majority of the time, police officers would cite detecting an odor of an illegal substance as their reason to stop and frisk someone.
"This is really outrageous, and the report that they gave to the council was outrageous as well. What did they tell the council? Absolutely nothing," Fogel claimed.
The attorney is criticizing the police department for only reporting on stop and frisks that did not result in an arrest: "And what do we know? They did not keep track of all the stop and frisks in a way that we can measure how many there were,” he said.
Hill says City Council wants to take steps to change this: "Council really has certainly a heightened awareness. Even now, more than ever around just the need to be taken the most proactive and expedient steps forward to address it so that our community can feel that everyone is being treated fairly," she said.
Councilors are expected to come up with a civilian review board that will be a part of the decision-making process on how to fix this in the future. The first meeting to pick board members is set for April 24.