NYPD Continues to Underreport Incidents of Stops and Frisks, Significant Racial Disparities Persist

Stop-and-Frisk Attorneys Respond to Monitor’s Report

September 1, 2021, New York– In response to a report just filed by Peter Zimroth, the court-appointed monitor in the landmark stop-and-frisk case Floyd v. City of New York, stop-and-frisk attorneys issued the following comments:

“This latest monitor’s report shows that reports of the demise of race-based stop and frisk in New York City were greatly exaggerated,” said Center for Constitutional Rights Senior Attorney Darius Charney, lead counsel for the Floyd plaintiffs. “After almost seven  years of federal oversight, the NYPD still conducts more than 80 percent of its stops on Black and Latinx New Yorkers, just like it did during the height of the Bloomberg stop-and-frisk era a decade ago. And because of the vast number of unreported stops, as documented by the monitor, the racial disparities are larger than we realize.”

Attorney Jonathan Moore of Beldock, Levine & Hoffman, LLP, co-lead counsel for the Floyd plaintiffs, said, “Unless and until the NYPD can make adequate assurances that they are documenting all stops and encounters, we will never be able to determine if they are engaged in constitutional policing. The monitor admits that there is no way to determine whether the NYPD is engaged in constitutional policing given the NYPD’s admitted failure to document all stops and encounters.”

Also of note:

  • When the large numbers of undocumented stops are accounted for, the monitor's analyses show that Black people are significantly more likely than white people to be frisked, searched, and have force used against them during stops. 
  • When the large numbers of undocumented stops are accounted for, the monitor's analyses show that Latinx people stopped by the NYPD are significantly more likely than white people stopped by the NYPD to be frisked.
  • Searches of Black and Latinx people were less likely to recover weapons or contraband than were searches of whites, which suggests officers are using a lower standard of suspicion when deciding to search Black and Latinx people.

In August 2013, the Center for Constitutional Rights and co-counsel won a landmark ruling that found the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk practices to be racially discriminatory and unconstitutional under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. The court appointed a monitor to oversee reforms, including a joint remedial process that is intended to solicit substantive input from directly affected communities as well as other stakeholders.

Read the monitor’s report here.

The Center for Constitutional Rights works with communities under threat to fight for justice and liberation through litigation, advocacy, and strategic communications. Since 1966, the Center for Constitutional Rights has taken on oppressive systems of power, including structural racism, gender oppression, economic inequity, and governmental overreach. Learn more at ccrjustice.org.


Last modified 

September 1, 2021