Could you be arrested for being black? Is racial discrimination still exists? That’s what the latest ACLU study is wondering. Their study, “The War on Marijuana in Black and White”, studied the racial bias in marijuana arrests across the country. Their finding was that on average, a black person was nearly 4x more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than a white person. Yet studies continue to show that black and white people use marijuana at similar rates. Sadly, this isn’t decreasing and from 2001 to 2010 the ratio between black people and white people actually increased by nearly a third.
Racial Discrimination is Alive
Racial discrimination and profiling absolutely still exists in America and among law enforcement officials. Particularly in drug crimes, possession charges, and in sentencing, black people often face more arrests, longer sentences, and harsher penalties. In fact, by the age of 23, half of all black men will have been arrested at least once.
The U.S. Justice Department said earlier last month that they would begin collecting data on the stops, searches, and arrests made in order to review racial biases in the criminal justice system in America. They will work with local law enforcement in specific cities to find ways to reduce the biases that exist, particularly towards young black or minority men. Justice Department data already revealed that black men were 6x more likely to be imprisoned than white men in 2012. Latino men were 2.5x more likely to be imprisoned.
Racial disparities continue to plague our nation and contribute to tension between law enforcement and minority groups. This breeds resentment towards law enforcement that is counterproductive to the overall goal of reducing criminal activity. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin case, civil liberties groups and justice advocates are calling for better relations between law enforcement and young men of color. Yet on the streets and in the jails, the problem is still black and white.
Big Cities Lead
Racial profiling and biasing is evident in large cities, such as New York, San Francisco, and even Denver. Are police officers stopping and arresting more minority men for not other reason than the color of their skin? Does being black make police officers suspect that you are up to no good? The New York Civil Liberties Union seems to think so. Their data found that in New York City, 87% of all people who were stopped in 2011 were either black or Latino.
If you or someone you love was arrested and charged with a crime and you believe that racial bias or profiling was the reason, it is imperative that you speak to an experienced Denver criminal defense lawyer. Your attorney will need to build an aggressive defense against your charges and protect your civil rights throughout the legal process. You will need someone in your corner fighting aggressively to ensure that you do not receive longer sentences, increased charges, or escalated penalties simply for being a minority.
Denver criminal defense lawyer Steven Louth has success defending minorities who have been wrongly accused of crimes in Denver, Aurora, and throughout the State of Colorado. You have rights that should be protected during the criminal process, but without an experienced Denver criminal defense lawyer on your side—the sad truth is that these rights are often violated.
Contact Denver Criminal Defense Lawyers
Denver criminal defense attorney Steven Louth has successfully represented accused individuals in Denver, Aurora, Littleton, Boulder, and throughout Colorado. If you have been arrested and charged with a crime in Denver, Boulder, or anywhere in Colorado, call Steven Louth Law Offices at 303-442-2297 today for a free case evaluation. No matter how serious the charges are against you, there are ways to fight them. Call today!