Members of New York’s state legislature and the New York City Council headed to Washington today for a series of meetings to lodge complaints about a controversial stop-and-frisk tactic used by the New York Police Department. Stop-and-frisk, according to a recent report, overwhelmingly targets minorities. The lawmakers and council members going to Washington contend that those on the receiving end of the tactic are having their civil rights violated, according to the New York Observer. “We cannot get away from the fact that there is implicit racial bias in this tactic used by the NYPD,” said State Assemblyman Karim Camara in a statement. “Since City officials refuse to listen, we are taking our cause to Washington. It’s time for some high-powered back up to advocate for the civil rights of New Yorkers.” The delegation also delivered a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder.
Multiple sources told the Observer’s Hunter Walker that Attorney General Eric Holder met with the Congressional Black Caucus the day before the New York delegation arrived to discuss stop-and-frisk. Another source reported that Holder was looking to investigate the controversial NYPD tactic. City Councilman Jumaane Williams told the Observer of several ways the Justice Department could support their fight against stop-and-frisk, adding, “They didn’t balk at any of it, they’re interested in all of it.”