Speed Reads


ACLU accuses Boston Police Department of racial bias

The ACLU has released a new report with some troubling accusations. The report found that for as many as 75 percent of Boston police encounters, "little to no justification" was given for police actions. And, the ACLU adds, 63 percent of those encounters targeted African-Americans.

The "Black, Brown, and Targeted" report, released Wednesday, looked at more than 200,000 of the Boston Police Department's encounters with civilians between 2007 and 2010. The Massachusetts branch of the ACLU used data from the BPD's "Field Interrogation, Observation, Frisk and/or Search" reports to compile its report.

The ACLU claims that the BPD has "engaged in racially biased policing, often stopping black civilians in the city with little justification," Time reports. Only 2.5 percent of the total cases resulted in police seizure of contraband, and many of the civilian encounters didn't lead to arrests. However, the police department released a statement Wednesday saying that ACLU report "doesn't paint the whole picture," adding that roughly 23 percent of its police force is black.

"When the final report is complete, the BPD will seek the advice of an outside consultant to advise on whether there are further steps the Department can take to ensure officers are appropriately conducting FIO's," the BPD stated. "Until then, it would be irresponsible and inflammatory to promulgate study findings out of context."