John Rappaport Cited on Stop and Frisk, ACLU Scapegoating in the Washington Post

Jeff Sessions blames the ACLU for Chicago’s homicide rate. He’s wrong.

The study has been criticized in a number of places, including by Salvador Rizzo here at The Washington Post, and by John Rappaport at Slate. The main criticism is that street stops in other cities have also fallen — in some places pretty dramatically — without a corresponding rise in homicides such as the one we’ve seen in Chicago. For example, Street stops in New York City fell from 685,000 in 2011 to just under 23,000 in 2015. Despite dire warnings from supporters of stop and frisk that the city was about to endure a bloodbath, the city’s homicide rate hit record lows.

In their paper, Cassell and Fowles dismiss what happened in New York as an “anomaly.” They suggest that the two cities may have seen different results because New York has more police per capita than Chicago.


But New York is far from an anomaly. As Rizzo points out, cities such as Newark, Seattle and Philadelphia also dramatically decreased the number of stop and frisks and didn’t see a Chicago-like spike in homicides. Philadelphia, for example, entered into a consent decree in 2011 that reduced the number of stop and frisks. Two years later, homicides in the city hit a 45-year low. (The city did see a five-year high in homicides in 2017, but also saw an increase in gun arrests the same year. Meanwhile, all other violent crime declined.) Rappaport also notes that homicides did spike in other cities in 2016 at rates similar to Chicago, but those cities did not significantly alter their policies on stop and frisk. All of this suggests that the spike was driven by other factors.

Read more at The Washington Post