DURHAM: Police on defense against racial profiling charges - WRBL

Durham police on defense against racial profiling charges

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The Durham Police Department is responding to critics who claim officers unfairly target minorities for searches and traffic stops.

In a 45-page report released on Feb. 17, Durham police say claims of racial profiling are "not supported by the facts" and claims groups like the NAACP, Southern Coalition for Social Justice and Fostering Alternative Drug Enforcement (F.A.D.E.) "have presented misleading data" to support their conclusions.

The department points to internal data showing 712 official complaints against officers since 2008, which they say, represents just 0.54 percent of all service calls in that time, adding "to expect much better than 99 percent satisfaction is asking for perfection which is not reasonable - none of us are perfect."

The department also says it is "taking a hard look at itself," reviewing procedures and offering officers more training.

The report is in response to questions raised by the city's Human Relations Commission, which recently asked members of the public to come forward with their own stories of racial profiling.

At least one of the groups that has complained about profiling is not satisfied with the police response.  In a statement, Durham's Southern Coalition for Social Justice said the report is "full of misinformation" and "needless to say, we take great issue with many of the assertions made."

Derick Waller

Derick is a reporter for WNCN covering crime, education, politics and just about everything in between. He has a knack for adapting to any story and consistently delivers information quickly across multiple platforms. More>>

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