Why are police handing out cards?

April 30, 2009 9:32:07 PM PDT
The NYPD has begun handing out information cards telling people why they were stopped and searched on city streets. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Thursday that the pilot program began earlier this month in one precinct in Brooklyn and two in Manhattan. It's based on a study of the so-called stop-and-frisk tactics that says officers need to better explain what they're doing.

The palm-size cards cite a state code allowing stops by officers if they reasonably think a person may be a suspect. They also list common reasons, like being seen running from a crime scene and carrying what appears to be a weapon.

They say "the NYPD regrets any inconvenience" if it wrongly stops someone.

The department, which made more than a half million street stops last year, says it's a valuable crime-fighting tool. Civil right activists have filed a lawsuit accusing police of singling out minorities.


NEW YORK AND TRI-STATE AREA NEWS

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