For Immediate Release
Police Complete 2011 Racial Profiling Review
Chief Williams and the Springfield Police Department (SPD) Command Staff have completed their review of the 2011 racial profiling traffic stop data provided by the Missouri Attorney General's office. This review is done yearly and is a normal part of SPD operations.
The initial review listed 21 officers for 2011, vs. 28 officers in 2010, who were considered outside of normal stop parameters and prompted a further look into those numbers. The officers' traffic stop data, current assignments, beat locations, crime statistics, hours of operation, and minority population were among factors considered prior to determining if the officer was out of policy for racial profiling. The review showed while the data an issue regarding raised disparity in traffic stops, there is no clear picture to indicate and discrimination or bias exists with Springfield officers.
The SPD has established an ongoing dialogue regarding the issues presented within the traffic stop data with representatives of the minority community, and will meet with the Cheryl Clay, President-Springfield Chapter NAACP, to discuss the 2011 statistics and findings. The SPD will continue to research the data and utilize various factors, such as population, type of violations, crime trends, location, officer assignment, etc. to further analyze what has been compiled. The SPD will also continue to work with Dr. Michael Stout of MSU to complete an unbiased, third party review of the traffic stop data available for 2011.
The SPD is determined to be compliant with the State Statutes and remain within our own department policy, which prohibits bias based policing. To that affect, the SPD will be working with Mrs. Francine Pratt, representing the NAACP, on a training module for officers within the upcoming year. The SPD will also be working with the NAACP to educate the public and keep all residents informed as to our progress.
Media Contact: Cpl. Matt Brown, phone: 417-864-1786
Release authorized by: Chief Paul Williams