There is no room for racial profiling in the law and if an officer is racially profiling someone, they are indeed doing something illegal. If a police officer openly harms or targets a person because of their race then they have broken the law and they deserve to be penalized in court. Since racial profiling clearly takes away a person’s constitutional rights then anyone who faces it should not hesitate to call a police brutality attorney in Houston, Texas.
Individuals are often afraid of escalating matters legally, especially when their complaint is against a police officer. However, the fact which everyone needs to understand is that if police officers are allowed to get away with racially profiling one person they will continue to maintain their unacceptable behavior in future encounters.
When one officer is allowed to get away then the trend of discriminating and penalizing a person because of their race will continue to exist and even poses a risk of growing. The issue of racial profiling can only be resolved when everyone starts speaking out and making noise about the way they are being treated.
Is racial profiling really a problem in Texas?
As unfortunate as it is, racial profiling by officers is a very prominent problem in Texas. Take, for example, the recent case in which police officers attacked and arrested an innocent student for passing out flyers for his lawn care business. The young African American man was told that he ‘fit the description’ of a criminal and was forced to hear many other racial slurs as well during the arrest.
According to the law, police officers are not allowed to:
- Arrest someone solely based on their ethnicity
- Detain someone solely based on their ethnicity
- Harm someone because of their ethnicity
- Use racial slurs
The law also requires that police departments create written policies preventing officers from acting in discriminatory ways. Police departments are also required to collect data on complaints of discriminatory stops and report it to the chief state’s attorney as well as the African American Affairs Commission (AAAC). The AAAC is required to review the complaints and create reports based on it.
If a matter of police brutality escalates, it is quite possible that the police department can be held liable if they have not been following the law properly.
A police brutality attorney in Houston, TX can dig into the legalities of the police department’s policies to find out if they have been collecting data and filing complaints as required by the law. If they are found guilty of not having fulfilled their duties then this negligence can be used to hold them accountable for the racial profiling a person was forced to endure.
If anyone has been arrested or hurt by an officer solely because of their race, they should not hesitate to reach out to a lawyer in order to legally escalate the matter.