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Sun Oct 31, 2021, 01:20 PM

Philadelphia to become first major US city to ban minor traffic stops to promote equity


Philadelphia to become first major US city to ban minor traffic stops to promote equity, curb 'negative interactions' with police
John Bacon
USA TODAY



Philadelphia will become the first major U.S. city to ban police from making traffic stops for minor violations such as broken tail lights when Mayor Jim Kenney signs City Council-approved legislation as soon as this week.

Such stops have been encouraged in some police departments as a pretext to search vehicles of drivers suspected of carrying illegal drugs or weapons. But critics of the stops say they prompt a disproportionate number of stops involving drivers of color.

"#DrivingEquality reinforces that public safety can be achieved with other methods than traffic stops," Councilmember Isaiah Thomas, the bill's author, tweeted Sunday. "Traffic stops are traumatic for drivers and scary for police officers. Limiting them makes everyone safer and communities stronger."

The issue resurfaced in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, in April when Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, was fatally shot during a stop initiated for an air freshener hanging from his rearview mirror and expired car registration tags. Officers later attempted to arrest Wright for an outstanding warrant and, after a brief struggle, Wright was shot at close range.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/10/31/philadelphia-ban-minor-police-traffic-stops/6224286001/

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