Criminal and Racial Profiling
Criminal profiling is the act of using a profile of crime in order to locate and identify suspects: it is, in the words of Grafton (2008), "where you look at a specific crime and you try to determine -- does it occur in a specific way and is it caused by a specific type of person." Racial profiling, on the other hand, is the act of using race to locate and identify suspects -- "to target people" (Dutta, 2010). Criminal profiling is part of a process that law enforcement agents employ in order to get a better understanding of and hold on crime and crime-ridden areas. Racial profiling, which can often be confused with criminal profiling because criminal profiles often produce a theme of "ethnic group in control for a specific type of crime," is part of a process of harassing individuals based primarily on their race or ethnicity rather than on the fact that they fit a "criminal" profile based on their actions, habits, associates, etc. (Grafton, 2008). Criminal profiling looks at actions, while racial profiling looks at skin color.
What is being done to curb or prevent racial profiling in my area of is that the police department has "established a Citizen Complaint...
The police department also joined with the ACLU to "adopt community problem-oriented policing, or CPOP" (Semuels, 2015). This is a program designed to have law enforcement agents focus on the causes of crime rather than on arresting criminals. Since the implementation of CPOP, the police have seen incarceration rates and crime rates drop considerably. CPOP has been effective in curbing racial profiling by law enforcement in the community as can be seen by the renewed focus and energy on arresting the causes of crime rather than arresting people who fit a specific racial profile. This is an important development in the relationship between law enforcement and the community, especially considering the tension that has risen in the city following the shooting death of a teenaged, unarmed black male as well as recent riots and protests. Plus, the city also has a history of racial tension between the minority community and the law enforcement officers, who police them and have used racial profiling in the past.
Koffler (2015) describes an event of racial profiling on Time.com. Here can be found a recent depiction of racial…
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