Photo Finish: An Artistic Take on Stop-and-Frisk

Mural tells people to document any interaction with police

(Photo by Daniel Bejarano/Hunts Point Express)

As we noted earlier, the New York City is in the midst of a robust discussion of the police department’s controversial “stop-and-frisk” practices.

The Hunts Point Express reported on three murals addressing the topic, painted last month by the 25-year-old graffiti artist Sharon De La Cruz at the community development corporation The Point:

Painted last month, the murals are part of a campaign some citizens have launched against the New York Police Department’s stop and frisk policy. The campaign, led by the group Communities United for Police Reform, wants the City Council to end the policy and impose civilian oversight of the NYPD.

Under stop and frisk, more than 684,000 New Yorkers were stopped by police last year, told to produce identification, patted down and had their pockets searched. Eighty-seven percent of those searched were black or Latino, according to data released by the Police Department as part of a lawsuit filed by the Center for Constitutional Rights.

Police call it an effective crime prevention technique and point to continued reductions in citywide crime rates. Neighborhood activists and many law abiding people who are routinely  searched while walking on public streets call it racially motivated harassment.

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