This week, the Newark Police Department released monthly data on it stop-and-frisk tactics.
Civil rights advocates have praised the department’s decision to make the information public, but the data has also raised concerns that the police are stopping too many black people.
Although the Newark Police Department has agreed to release the race, age, and gender of every person stopped, critics argue that the information released for July was incomplete because it did not include the race, age, and gender of people who were actually arrested or issued a summons. The department also failed to provide data about stops and searches of Hispanic citizens.
The Newark police director blamed the missing data on clerical errors. He has stated that the information will be available next month.
The controversial stop-and-frisk program has been called an “intrusive practice” that potentially encourages racial profiling. The department has maintained the stop-and-frisk program under the threat of federal intervention. As a result, publication of the limited data has been hailed by some as a great leap forward.
According to the data, Newark police stopped 2,109 people last month and made an arrest or issued a summons in 568 of those incidents. Of the total number of people stopped, roughly 72 percent were black. This has drawn the ire of Newark leaders and civil rights groups because just 51 percent of Newark residents are black.
In response to concerns about racial profiling, the Newark police director cautioned that the data chronicled just one month.
For more information, see the NJ.com article entitled “Newark Releases Stop-and-Frisk Data to Mix of Praise and Concern.”