Monday, December 19, 2011

USDOJ Probe Found The East Haven, Connecticut, Police Department Discriminated Against Hispanics

East Haven police officers engaged and practice discrimination against Hispanics during traffic stops and targeted Latino drivers.

By H. Nelson Goodson
December 19, 2011

Washington D.C. - On Monday, the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division (DOJCRD) confirmed that an investigation found the East Haven Police Department (EHPD) in Connecticut engaged and practice discrimination against Latinos in violation of the Constitution and federal laws. The DOJCRD announced in a news release, that a civil rights investigation which began on September 2009 determined the EHPD intentionally targeted Latinos for traffic enforcement and treated Latino drivers more harshly after traffic stops in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968.
The investigation further found that EHPD has willfully enabled discrimination by failing to put in place basic law enforcement practices and procedures used by law enforcement agencies across the country to prevent discrimination. The department also found a number of serious deficiencies in EHPD’s management, oversight and accountability systems that have enabled discriminatory policing by EHPD officers.
In addition, although not making formal findings, the department noted two areas of serious concern regarding allegations of use of excessive force and unconstitutional searches and seizures. The department also expressed concern with EPHD leadership creating and condoning a hostile and intimidating environment for anyone seeking to provide relevant information in this investigation, according to the DOJCRD.

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