Banning Traffic Stops to Cure Racism
Law enforcement groups are warning that cities across the country implementing policies to prohibit most traffic stops by police are going to result in a preventable increase in crime. The New York Times reports that cities including Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Berkeley, Lansing, Mich, Brooklyn Center, Minn, and the State of Virginia have adopted such policies. The City of Los Angeles is also considering having unarmed civilians enforce “safety related traffic violations,” such as speeding according to the LA Times.
Traffic stops are often dangerous for officers, who often don’t know the identity or race of the driver or the passengers in the vehicle until it is pulled over. Violations such as no license plate or expired tags often mean that the vehicle is stolen. A car that is speeding or driving erratically often has an intoxicated driver. In each of these situations a stop may become far more important than the traffic violation. Traffic stops are a major source of arrests for illegally armed gang members, wanted criminals and drug traffickers. Occasionally traffic stops result in officers being shot, sometimes fatally.
Last week a suspect was stopped in East Jordan, Michigan for a traffic violation. A routine check of his driver’s license revealed he was wanted in Las Vegas for murder, first degree kidnapping, armed robbery and drug trafficking. Last month Nebraska police pulled over Darrell Harrison Jr., for a traffic violation. Harrison was wanted for the murder of a 21-year-old man in Pennsylvania. In February Police arrested 25-year-old Keiontay Davis during a routine traffic stop in Atlanta. Davis was wanted for a September 2022 aggravated assault and murder. Last Sunday Maryland Police tried to pull over a U-Haul van after complaints that it was driving erratically. The driver, Dennis Bell, ended up crashing the van in a ditch. He was arrested after officers found a naked, kidnapped woman in the van with knife wounds. Bell is being charged with kidnapping, first degree assault, sexual assault, possession of cocaine and driving while intoxicated.
None of these cases are particularly unusual. Three suspected murderers and a kidnapper were discovered during routine traffic stops that progressives insist should be prohibited. Can you imagine an unarmed civilian handling these offenders? Was the race of the suspects or the officers important in these incidents?
At a time when crime and violence have reached levels that are driving people and businesses out of many large American cities, progressive politicians want to take away a very important means of identifying and apprehending criminals.
What could possibly go wrong?