ACLU report: signs of racial bias in Illinois traffic stops

Aug 13, 2014

Police in the City of Peoria and County are more likely to ask to search the vehicles of minority drivers compared to whites during traffic stops. That's according to data collected by the state from 2013. The American Civil Liberties Union says that mirrors statewide numbers. But ACLU Spokesman Ed Yohnka says statewide and central Illinois data also show targeting blacks and Latinos is not only discriminatory, it's not a wise enforcement effort:

 “There’s actually contraband more often found in the cars of white motorists for a search I think is something that’s very troubling and shows that we still have a long way to go.”

 Peoria City officers found contraband 37-percent of the time in stops of white drivers and 25-percent of the time during searches of vehicles driven by minorities. The Peoria County Sheriff’s Office found contraband slightly more often during minority searches than for whites. The analysis is based on figures reported by law enforcement agencies during 2013 under the Illinois Traffic Stop Statistical Study Act.