SHOW ME THE RECORDS: The Columbia Police Department's racial profiling statistics

Monday, July 19, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

Each week, the Missourian highlights a government record that is available to the public. Open records help people keep government in check and help them better understand how government affects their lives.

For a complete list of Show Me the Records, go to

The records: The Columbia Police Department’s most recent report on racial profiling statistics for traffic stops.

Why you’d want them: The data compares 14  categories during traffic stops for the following racial groups: White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and Other.

Where you get the records: Go to, then download the document that says "2009 report."

How much it will cost: The information is free.


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Ray Shapiro July 19, 2010 | 1:34 a.m.

("Racial profiling refers to the use of an individual’s race or ethnicity by law enforcement personnel as a key factor (or sometimes as any factor at all) in deciding whether to engage in enforcement (e.g. make a traffic stop or arrest). The practice is controversial and widely considered inappropriate and illegal.")

Seems to me that these statistics don't prove racial profiling. Why would the city government label these stats as such?
I would much rather know how many accusations of racial profiling law suits went to court and were determined as such.
To parrot these stats as "Racial Profiling" implies wrong doing on the part of our officers. Shame on the government for misleading the public.

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