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US Legislators Complain to the Justice Department

US Legislators Complain to the Justice Department

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Several United States legislators say they have written to the Justice Department asking it to intervene immediately to stop the New York Police Department (NYPD) policy of unnecessarily stopping and frisking Caribbean nationals.

Caribbean American Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke says the letter was sent directly to Attorney General Eric Holder, who traces his roots to Barbados, to immediately to “protect the constitutional rights of residents in the New York metropolitan area”.

Miss Clarke, the daughter of Jamaican immigrants, who represents the predominantly Caribbean 11th Congressional District in Brooklyn, says in the previous decade, of the more than 3.8 million “innocent people” who have been detained by the police, almost 90% were Blacks or Latinos.

She says the constitution establishes that individuals are presumed innocent and the  practice of conducting searches of young African-American and Latino men on the sidewalk, and the warrantless surveillance of Muslims gathered for study in schools and prayer in mosques, undermine the civil society’s moral commitment to the personal privacy and dignity of each person.

After weeks of gun violence in New York City, miz Clarke says the NYPD has justified the use of stop-and-frisk but the policy has “only created fear within neighbourhoods and increased tensions between our community and the police.