(NEW YORK) — New York City’s controversial “stop-and-frisk” program appears to be fully back in business for the time being.
It was last August that U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin declared that the policy used by New York City cops to fight crime was unconstitutional, contending that it violated the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments by unfairly targeting minorities, particularly blacks and Hispanics.
At the time, Scheindlin said that the policy could continue but under much tighter restrictions.
However, the judge was overruled Thursday by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which not only blocked her required changes to the stop-and-frisk program but also removed Scheindlin from the case.
The restrictions will be stayed until an appeal by the city is heard — probably not until next spring.
The appeals court ruling is a major victory for New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, who argued that the program helped to lower crime rates in the city.
In 2012, New Yorkers were stopped by police 532,911 times. In 55 percent of the cases, the suspect was black, and in 10 percent of the cases, the suspect was white. In 89 percent of the cases, “the suspect was innocent,” the New York City Civil Liberties Union reported.
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