Friday, November 5, 2010

More About the ACLU's Suit Against Philly Police

The Daily news profiles Mahari Bailey, an African-American attorney who has joined the suit against Philly PD's "stop and frisk" tactics:

"The following August, Bailey and some friends were standing near 53rd and Euclid streets in Wynnefield when officers, without cause or justification, the suit says, ordered Bailey and his friends to stand against a wall to be searched.

When Bailey told the officers that he was a lawyer and refused to consent to a search, one officer 'raised his fists in a threatening manner,' and told Bailey that he didn't 'give a f--- who you are,' the lawsuit says. Bailey was again released with no criminal charges being filed against him.

In May, Bailey was pulled over at 59th and Master streets in West Philadelphia. When Bailey asked why he had been stopped, one of the officers told him to 'shut up' and that he 'was in the wrong neighborhood,' according to the suit."

I'm dubious those tactics would ever be attempted in my Center City neighborhood. I know Philly's tough to police, but treating everybody like a criminal is a crappy -- and unconstitutional -- way to try and fix things. And probably ineffective: If even innocent and accomplished people like Mahari Bailey become angry and alienated from the police, is it any wonder a "don't snitch" ethos prevails in the city?

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