If you’re black and you’re driving in Missouri, you’re a whopping 91% more likely to be stopped by police than a white driver. If you happen to be in your own neighborhood, it may be even worse.
That’s according to a report from the Attorney General’s Office. That last bit of information is an essential detail from the data because it refutes the notion that the law enforcement agencies have pushed that the numbers only look skewed because people of color stand out when they’re driving through predominately white neighborhoods and are from another area.
In reality, if you’re black and behind the wheel, it seems like the Missouri police are more suspicious of you — no matter where you are. This isn’t particularly news to African Americans, however. In 2017, the Missouri National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) issued a travel advisory because of the problems black people have with police discrimination.
Some parts of Missouri are worse than others. In St. Louis County, blacks were stopped by police 80% more often than whites. In the Kansas City area, however, blacks were stopped 275% more often than whites.
As a whole, racial tensions between law enforcement and black Missourians have been high since 2014 when an unarmed black teen was shot and killed in a suburb of St. Louis. This report isn’t the only sign of racist attitudes from the police. The Plain View Project recently identified 166 racist or violent posts online that were from either former or active-duty law enforcement officers.
Racial profiling is a serious problem for people of color. It leads to stops with a lack of probable cause, unfounded searches, unreasonable seizures and unnecessary criminal charges. If you’ve been subjected to criminal charges, get experienced legal advice immediately.