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Fayetteville asks for federal review of police procedures

Posted December 10, 2010

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— City administrators in Fayetteville have asked the U.S. Justice Department to evaluate traffic stop practices of police after data showed officers were nearly four times more likely to search a car with a black driver.

City Manager Dale Iman sent a letter this week asking for the Justice Department's review of the police department.

Iman's view, described in his letter, is that the outsized number of blacks being searched "is reflective of active policing in high-crime areas which happen to be in predominately African-American communities and is not based upon race."

“It’s not that we target African-American neighborhoods or white neighborhoods, we target neighborhoods that have crime going on,” he said Friday.

Local NAACP president Jimmy Buxton said he is glad the city is seeking an independent review and wants to review more than 23,000 traffic stop reports dating to August 2009 to see if officers are profiling drivers by their race.

Fayetteville wants probe of police practices Fayetteville wants probe of police practices

Buxton said he became concerned when it was reported this fall that 1,239 black drivers were searched in traffic stops last year, compared with 346 white drivers.

The vast majority of the 25,024 traffic stops by police in 2009 didn't lead to searches of a driver, vehicle or passengers, according to a public database compiled by the State Bureau of Investigation

Officers must have a reason to believe a vehicle or the people inside are engaged in wrongdoing before conducting a search, unless the driver consents to an officer's request.

Buxton said he commends city leaders for getting an outside review but says he disagrees with their reasons on the stops.

He added that the NAACP doesn’t believe the entire police department is to blame.

“One apple in the barrel can spoil the whole bunch,” he said. “It needs to stop.”

The Fayetteville Police Department declined making any comment on the complaint Friday. It’s not clear how long the Justice Department’s review will take.


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  • go po-po Dec 10, 2010

    so tired of hearing the same old cry baby junk from these people

  • affirmativediversity Dec 10, 2010

    OH yeah and the Fayetteville State University PD search a total of 99 people during 2009...half were males and half were females BUT NO ONE HAD A RACE!!!! Wonder why?

  • affirmativediversity Dec 10, 2010

    What Mr. Buxton and the rest of these geniuses fail to point out is... this same study/report also stated that only 36 Native Americans were stopped, 8 Asians and 75 Hispanics during the entire year of 2009!!!!

    Does that sound even remotely correct to anyone? Its probably more likely that the reporting officers did "best guess" on the race thing...and didn't do it well!

  • rwbe Dec 10, 2010

    Racial Profiling....Get a grip. If is a fact if your high crime area and the is population highly based white, black or hispanic then that is who gets stopped the most. That is not a profile it is a fact based on numbers. When drug interdiction started years ago information obtained from traffic stops gave law enforcement fact based information to use to determine who was traffing drugs. Yea call it a profile from facts obtained during traffic stops. The NAACP said it is profiling my question to them have they lost there mind. You want a safe neighborhood or the bad guys on the street still committing crimes. Get a grip.

  • thepeopleschamp Dec 10, 2010

    Funny, under the Fayetteville section of right now is an article where a father stashed a gun under his son's leg during a traffic stop. Police searched the car and located the gun. There is a mug shot photo of this great father also. So what were we saying about the Fay. police being racist on whose car they search?

  • ncwiseguy Dec 10, 2010

    why more cars stopped with black drivers than white drivers?? because through much if not all of their lives, blacks have not been taught to be respectful, to be disciplined, to act with a little bit common sense and to obey the laws of the the land.

  • chevybelair57sd Dec 10, 2010

    If there was a need like high crime in mostly white neighborhoods, the arrests and stops would most likly be white, so if the police cheif is patroling mostly black neighborhoods due to the same happenings that would explain the situation.

  • chevybelair57sd Dec 10, 2010

    Do these folks count the ones that result in an arrest?? Profiling is just habit based on common sense. If there was no legal reason for the stop then it's harrassment and profiling. We tend to handcuff our officers like we do our troops in many cases

  • godswoman92 Dec 10, 2010

    dewpac1-You are right; blacks do commit more crimes than whites. We don't do more bad things than whites, it's just a simple fact that when whites do bad things it's called a prank, not a crime. But the ultimate judgement day is coming for us all and the Ultimate Judge knows whether it's a crime or a prank. Who is the black man selling the drugs for?

  • gmarcum Dec 10, 2010

    Boy, Barber is going to shed some lbs. running around this state.....