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Report: Nashville needs more community policing, not stops

November 20, 2018

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A new report has found that traffic stops in Nashville, Tennessee, disproportionately affect black residents, hurt community relations and don’t have the intended effect of reducing crime.

In 2017, traffic stops were 44 percent higher for black drivers than for white drivers, and non-moving violation stops for things like expired registration were 68 percent higher. The report from the Policing Project at the New York University School of Law did not conclude the stops were racially biased and noted that many stops were in high-crime minority neighborhoods.

The report comes as Nashville grapples with calls for more police accountability after a series of fatal shootings of black men by white police officers. It recommends redirecting officers to neighborhood policing.

In a statement, Police Chief Steve Anderson said the department “can and will” refocus on neighborhood public safety initiatives that don’t prioritize vehicle stops.

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