Baltimore Police Department

859 Words4 Pages
The United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division published a report entitled the “Investigation for the Baltimore City Policy Department” on August 10, 2016, based on suspicions that the Baltimore Police Department (BPD) engages in practices that violate federal anti-discrimination laws, the First Amendment, and Fourth Amendment. According to the report, the Baltimore Police Department is guilty of making stops, searches, and arrests without having probable cause, especially against African Americans. African Americans are also unlawfully subject to uses of excessive force and harsh retaliation by police for constitutionally-protected expression. Furthermore, because the Baltimore Police Department has a multitude of system deficiencies,…show more content…
In addition, BPD has also been found guilty of targeting African Americans as victims to these unwarranted stops, searches, and arrests. For example, from January 2010-May 2014, BPD officers recorded over 301,000 pedestrian stops. This number may be higher because many stops go undocumented. 124,000 pedestrian stops were made in 2014 alone. The Baltimore Police Department’s first mistake was creating the “zero tolerance” policy without providing its officers with the proper training on how to enforce these policies. Furthermore, although an additional “quality of life” policy has been implemented, BPD officers still enforce the “zero tolerance” policy. With officers who willingly deciding to constantly attack and harass community members, there will always be a separation between police officers and the community. When there is a community who distrusts the police and recognizes the police as an enemy, then the police officers serve no purpose in existing. The overall purpose of a police department is to employ individuals who have the passion and proper training to serve their community; therefore, when the community is against them they have no community left to…show more content…
The report has presented overwhelming statistical evidence to support this conclusion. BPD stops over 500 pedestrians per every 1,000 African Americans and only under 200 pedestrians for every 1,000 Caucasian Residents. A solution to this issue would be to have a diverse/variety of officers employed under the Baltimore Police Department. Diversity should not merely be based on race but on the background as well. BPD should only assign officers to work in a jurisdiction where they are familiar with the residents and the demographics of the area. For example, if an area is 90% African American and is known for high drug trafficking, an officer from a county with majority white residents and only a discriminatory point of view on African Americans should not be assigned to work in this area. It is important that officers familiarize themselves with the area they are policing because it will give them a certain level of understanding and aid in determining how they should approach situations. Also, officers should be able to honestly express when they are an assigned to an environment where they do not feel comfortable. Keeping the lines of communication open between police officers and administration is very important. Officers should be able to perform their duties in a comfortable environment
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