Attorney raises red flag over traffic stop data released by the Nassau Police Department
There is growing concern over a newly released traffic stop data report recently released by the Nassau Police Department.
Attorney Fred Brewington says the numbers don't add up. Brewington says of 465 people arrested in 2019 following a traffic stop, the race of 311 of those people is listed as unknown. The data also indicates that 21 of those arrested were Hispanic and 27 were Black.
"This is terrible," says Brewington. "This is bordering on a real question of fraudulent representations to the community."
Brewington tells News 12 that there are more than 27 arrested from traffic violations in a week or a month that go through the court system. Brewington says that just can't be, adding that the number can't be considered in any way to be accurate.
'I don't know if this is intentional, but it raises real questions about it," says Brewington.
A spokesperson for the police department says officers don't ask someone their race or ethnicity during traffic stops so sometimes it's simply unknown.
As News 12 reported 10 days ago, Suffolk officials held a news conference following the release of their traffic stop data. A Suffolk police spokesperson says officers also do not question motorists about their race or ethnicity. But a study there found Black and Hispanic drivers are ticketed and arrested at a disproportionately higher rate than white motorists.
"Let me be clear to you, these disparities are unacceptable to me," says Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
The Nassau police spokesperson also pointed out that Nassau is not under the same mandatory requirement by the Justice Department to keep such detailed data on race, so this report is just a sample. The spokesperson says going forward the department will be revising its data collection and input for added transparency.