After controlling for violent and property crime rates in specific neighbourhoods and other relevant factors, Ayres found that Blacks and Latinos were far more likely to be stopped, frisked and searched than Whites. A critical finding of the study was that the disparity cannot be explained by differential crime rates. Blacks were 42% less likely to be in possession of a weapon after being frisked; 23% less likely to be in possession of drugs; and, 25% less likely to be in possession of other contraband than Whites. Latinos were 32% less likely to be in possession of a gun after being frisked; 34% less likely to be in possession of a gun; and, 12% less likely to be in possession of other contraband than Whites.
The report also found that over the last five years, the LAPD has received approximately 1,200 complaints alleging racial profiling. All 1,200 cases were found to be unsubstantiated.
Despite the findings, LAPD Chief William Bratton appeared before the civilian commission two weeks ago and disputed the accuracy of the data claiming that the LAPD does not engage in racial profiling. In a commentary, "The LAPD and Racial Profiling", published in the Los Angeles Times shortly after the release of the study, Professor Ayres defended his findings.
Posted by Professor Tanovich