Arundel police give data on traffic stops

Md. officers are required to note drivers' ethnicity

July 19, 2002|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

Complying with a statewide effort to study accusations of racial profiling, Anne Arundel County police released traffic stop data yesterday for the first four months of the year.

The numbers show that of 12,238 drivers pulled over between January and April, 75.2 percent were white, 19.5 percent were black, 2.2 percent were Hispanic and 1.8 percent were Asian. Other drivers made up the remaining 1.3 percent.

According to the 2000 Census, Anne Arundel County was 81.2 percent white, 13.6 percent black, 2.6 percent Hispanic and 2.3 percent Asian.

County Police Chief P. Thomas Shanahan said he was pleased that the numbers are "in line with the proportion of minorities in the area."

Of the drivers stopped, 758 were arrested - with 73.2 percent of them white, 21.9 percent of them black, 3.2 percent of them Hispanic and 1.3 percent of them Asian, according to the data.

Anne Arundel County appears to be the second police department in the state to release traffic-stop figures. Data for all of 2002 is due by March.

Howard County released its data this month, and figures show police there stopped 19,541 drivers during the first four months of the year. About 65 percent were white, 27 percent were black, less than 5 percent were Asian and less than 2 percent were Hispanic, according to the data.

Officers throughout Maryland are required to fill out a traffic-stop data sheet each time they pull over a driver.

The sheets are collected, and the information is stored for future analysis by the University of Maryland, College Park, which will present an annual report on the subject to the governor and General Assembly.

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