Stop-and-Frisks Surge; NYPD Stops Nearly 320,000 So Far This Year

Wednesday, Aug 11, 2010  |  Updated 11:04 AM EDT
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Gov. David Paterson signed a bill that bans authorities from compiling the names and addresses of the hundreds of thousands of innocent people who are detained by police each year in stop-and-frisks but are not arrested.

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Less than a month after Gov. David Paterson signed a law banning authorities from compiling the names and addresses of the thousands of innocent people detained but not arrested in stop-and-frisks each year, new data reveals the number of those stopped continues to rise.

The New York Police Department has stopped, questioned and frisked nearly 320,000 people, most of whom are black and Hispanic men, since January.

The figures released Tuesday are an increase of 2 percent over the same period last year. The numbers have been steadily increasing, and in 2009 more than 570,000 people were stopped.

Nearly 170,000 people were stopped in the past three months alone -- a 21 percent increase over the same time period last year. Of those, 7 percent resulted in arrests. More than 2,000 weapons were recovered.

The NYPD provided the information to the City Council. A recently passed state law prohibits agencies from electronically storing the names of those questioned by police, but police said the new law does not prevent them from writing down those and other details from the stops.

Those who supported the law called the database a violation of one's right to privacy, while those who opposed it called the information a valuable crime-frighting tool. 

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