Racial profiling leaves the victim feeling highly disrespected and, it goes without a saying, that any police officer who demeans a person in this manner has violated their basic civil rights. Many people prematurely claim that the United States is now past such demeaning mentality, especially in the police department, but this is far from the truth. Cases of racial profiling are very common, and they occur regularly, though not many people report their experiences because they are unaware of the rights they are entitled to.
Racial profiling can be defined as the targeting of innocent people simply because of their color, religion, or the way they dress. Law enforcement officers often end up doing this by forcing innocent individuals to pull over for a search simply because of the race they belong to. It may seem hard to believe but it is true that individuals of certain skin tones and from certain backgrounds face police brutality a lot more than others.
When police officers search a person, interrogate a person, or publicly humiliate them without any evidence that this victim had been part of a crime, it is considered racial profiling. For instance, if a group of black teenagers are stopped, interrogated, and treated aggressively for no other reason than being together outside, the actions of the officer who stopped them are considered racial profiling.
This may seem unbelievable, but cases like these happen all the time. Police officers are even more likely to pull out their lethal weapons when it comes to dealing with individuals of a certain race, even when the victim is innocent and unarmed.
Another very popular example of racial profiling would be the unfair treatment of Arabs, and South Asian Muslims after the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11. These targeted individuals are often pulled over in airports and other such areas to be searched and interrogated for no other reason except the way they look.
African American Teenager shot to death by an officer in Ohio
In 2001 a case emerged of a 19-year-old teenager by the name of Timothy Thomas who was shot to death by a police officer. This teenager was simply running away from the officer when he was shot. He was the fifth African American to be killed by an officer in a five-month period.
Such cases are not rare, and it shows there is a lot of work needed to be done in the police department regarding racial profiling. When the victim is unarmed and not exhibiting any suspicious behavior, police officers have no right to interrogate and humiliate them, let alone cause them serious bodily harm.
The University of California and the University of Chicago have conducted studies that revealed that police officers truly do have a bias against African American individuals, and they are more likely to pull out their weapons and resort to violence when the suspect is African American.
If anyone has been targeted by a police officer due to racial profiling, they should get in touch with a police brutality lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney will be able to assist them in taking legal action against the officer and in filing complaints to all the relevant authorities.