Short Documentary: Inside Look at the NYPD’s Stop-and-Frisk Policy – Watch Video
Harlem, New York- According to the New York Civil Liberties Union, the NYPD stopped and frisked people 685,724 times in 2011 alone. That equals to just over 1,800 people a day.
An estimate of 87% of the stop and frisk searches involved blacks or Latinos, many of them young men. The NYPD’s controversial Stop and Frisk tactics has outraged many of the people, and is the subject matter of a short documentary called “The Scars of Stop and Frisk.”
The documentary produced by VideoNation, follows Alvin, a 17 year old that lives in Harlem.
On June 3, 2011, three plain clothes New York City Police officers stopped Alvin, and two of the officers questioned and frisked him, while the third remained in their unmarked car. Alvin secretly captured the interaction on his cell phone, and the audio resulted as one of the only known recordings of stop-and-frisk in action.
In the two-minute recording, the NYC officers gave no legally valid reason for the stop, use racially charged language and threaten Alvin with violence.
Alvin described what happen, “He grabbed me by my book bag and he started pushing me down. So I’m going backwards like down the hill and he just kept pushing me, pushing me, it looked like he we was going to hit me,” Alvin recounts. “I felt like they was trying to make me resist or fight back.”
Early in the stop, one of the officers asks, “You want me to smack you?” When Alvin asks why he is being threatened with arrest, the other officer responds, “For being a fucking mutt.”
While holding Alvin’s arm behind his back, the first officer says, “Dude, I’m gonna break your fuckin’ arm, then I’m gonna punch you in the fuckin’ face.”
The video and audio recording sheds unprecedented light on a practice, encouraged by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.
“It is time for Mayor Bloomberg to come to grips with the scale of the damage his policies have inflicted on our children and their families. No child should have to grow up fearing both the cops and the robbers.”says Ben Jealous, President of the NAACP.
“It’s really bad,” says the officer after listening to the audio recording. “It’s not a good thing at all. But it’s really common, I’m sorry to say. It doesn’t have to be like that.”