WNYC's Bob Hennelly is an award-winning investigative journalist. While at WNYC he has reported on a wide gamut of major public policy questions ranging from immigration and homeland security to power outages and utility mergers.
Stop-and-Frisk Becomes Issue in Mayor's Race
Saturday, September 05, 2009
New York, NY –
The NYPD's stopping and frisking of hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers every year has become an issue in the Mayor's race. WNYC's Bob Hennelly reports.
REPORTER: In the Democratic primary, Councilman Tony Avella opposes stop-and-frisk outright as unconstitutional. Comptroller Bill Thomspson says it's a valid law enforcement tool that needs oversight. This week Mayor Bloomberg expressed support for the police tactic, but only with safeguards to prevent racial profiling.
BLOOMBERG: And we want to make sure that they follow those rules and not just pick people totally at random and certainly not pick people based on things that they shouldn’t.
REPORTER: Critcs says nearly 90 percent of the more than a half million New Yorkers stopped and frisked are people of color, who committed no crime. Only 4 percent of the stops actually produce arrests. But the NYPD says in 2008 alone, the practice yielded 747 handguns, more than 80 rifles and assualt weapons, as well as nine machine guns.
For WNYC, I'm Bob Hennelly.