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US Judge Rules Traffic Stop By Cops in Racial Profiling Case Unconstitutional, Tosses Evidence

04:50  17 november  2021
04:50  17 november  2021 Source:   newsweek.com

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A federal judge in Maine ruled that a traffic stop in a racial profiling case was unconstitutional, tossing the evidence obtained at the stop.

A judge ruled that a evidence seized in traffic stop in a racial profiling case was tossed after the stop was said to unconstitutional. In this photo, people light candles during a vigil held by social justice activists to honor those who have died because of racial profiling and police violence, outside the Park Hills Community Church in Los Angeles, California on March 7, 2021. © David Mcnew/Getty Images A judge ruled that a evidence seized in traffic stop in a racial profiling case was tossed after the stop was said to unconstitutional. In this photo, people light candles during a vigil held by social justice activists to honor those who have died because of racial profiling and police violence, outside the Park Hills Community Church in Los Angeles, California on March 7, 2021.

The case is about Trooper John Darcy, who was recorded talking to a fellow trooper on a cruiser microphone before stopping a Black motorist through York in August 2019. Darcy said the man looked like a "thug," pointing out his dreadlocks and shirt, but also said he was not racially profiling the driver.

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However, on Monday, U.S. District Judge Nancy Torresen said Darcy was not a credible witness and the dashcam video from his cruiser contradicted the reasons he gave for the traffic stop, according to the Portland Press Herald.

Police seized 140 grams of cocaine, 880 counterfeit prescription pills, and a loaded firearm in the stop. However, because the stop was ruled unconstitutional, the evidence cannot be used in the case.

The motorist pleaded not guilty to a charge of possession of fentanyl and heroin with intent to distribute, The Associated Press reported.

An investigation of over 1,000 traffic stops was done by the state police chief after the one in question. No pattern of racial profiling by Darcy was discovered.

Tom Pappas, president of the Maine State Troopers Association, said he had yet to see the ruling and, therefore, could not comment on it.

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Because of Darcy's recorded comments, defense attorneys and the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine started to challenge arrests he made in other cases, the Portland Press Herald reported.

"This order imposes necessary consequences for the illegal actions of the Maine State Police," said Emma Bond, the legal director of the ACLU of Maine.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Maine Department of Public Safety is aware of the ruling and is reviewing it, said Shannon Moss, a spokesperson for the agency.

"We will review the ruling and the supporting investigation documentation. It would be inappropriate for us to provide a statement without such a review," Moss said.

ACLU of Maine legal director Emma Bond said the case "is just one example of the racial profiling that is pervasive in Maine and across the country." She said it's an example of how "gut feelings" can result in racial profiling.

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The case opened up a debate between lawmakers, activists and public safety officials about the role of racial profiling in Maine policing. Maine Rep. Jeffrey Evangelos filed a complaint with the state when Darcy was later given the Trooper of the Year award.

Evangelos and others felt Darcy was given the award as a rebuke of the Black Lives Matter movement. Officials later said Darcy was recommended for the award before the allegations of racial profiling surfaced.

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usr: 1
This is interesting!