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Racial Profiling by Police Essay

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The Fourth Amendment protects the right of people to be secure in their persons, ‘
houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures… (108). Under
the Fourth Amendment the legal constraints placed on police and the rules they must
follow for “Stop and Frisk” happened as a result of the “Terry v. Ohio “case (162). The
constraints are that the police cannot stopped and frisk people without reasonable suspicion
probable cause or a warrant. Before 1968 the police could search a suspect only if they had
probable cause. After the Terry case the police may conduct a frisk search of a suspect’s outer
clothing only if there was reasonable suspicion. The U.S. Supreme Court definition of “Frisk”
is: a patting down of the outer clothing of a suspect based on the reasonable suspicion, designed
to protect a police officer from attack with a weapon when making an inquiry. A “Search” is an
exploration for evidence.

Although frisk are restricted to a search for weapons that may pose an immediate threat
to the officer’s safety, the Court concluded that cases as these are decided by their own facts;
generally, however, police officers who see unusual conduct that leads them to conclude that
criminal activity are involved and that the persons are armed and dangerous are entitled to
conduct “a carefully limited search of the outer clothing of such persons trying to discover
weapons” that may be used to assault them (163) Such a frisk are reasonable under the
Fourth Amendment, and any weapons seized is introduced in evidence.

Reasonable suspicion is when a police officer has good reason to believe that criminal
activity may be occurring as in the case of “Terry v. Ohio” (162). The police officer
observed thre...


... middle of paper ...


...s under O’Malley (100,000) that O’Malley won by a
landslide by the number of arrest made. On the other hand Mayor Rawlings engaged the
targeted approached and went after violent and repeated offenders which resulted in a decrease in
homicide to fewer than 200 in 2011.

Racial profiling contributes to many frivolous minor infractions that burdens the prosecutors to
bring these cases to court. The court are overwhelmed with trying these cases and that takes time
away from the more violent cases As a result the correctional facilities becomes overcrowded
which cost the state money. Policing must not be initiated by numbers, race, ethnicity or national
origin. Racial profiling violates an individual’s civil right and if being done it violates the 4th
Amendment right.




Works Cited

Albanese, Jay S. Criminal Justice. Upper Saddle River : Pearson, 2013. Print.


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