Feminist Daily News 1/9/2013: Federal Judge Blocks NY Stop-and-Frisks Without Suspicion
Federal Judge Blocks NY Stop-and-Frisks Without Suspicion
On Tuesday, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction against the Bronx Trespass Affidavit Program’s (TAP) “stop-and-frisk” practices when performed without reasonable suspicion.
Judge Shira Scheindlin of the Federal Court District of Manhattan ruled that aspects of the stop-and-frisks used by the New York Police Department were unconstitutional because officers were stopping individuals outside of residential buildings without sufficient suspicion that they were trespassing. Scheindlin also issued an injunction against stop-and-frisks by officers unless there is substantial evidence that an individual is trespassing. She is also considering ordering the NYPD to adopt a written policy that defines the limited cases in which an individual may be stopped as part of TAP.
“While it may be difficult to say where, 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” Scheindlin wrote in her decision. “The evidence of numerous unlawful stops at the hearing strengthens the conclusion that the NYPD’s inaccurate training has taught officers the following lesson: stop and question first, develop suspicions later.”