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Reader's Disagreement With Writer About Arrests

Since 2008, arrests of Black and Latino youth in Pasadena have declined claims Cameron Turner in "Juvenile Arrests Drop Dramatically" [October 31, 2013]. The Pasadena Police Department (PPD) records are the source of his contention. Based on the 'dramatic drop', Mr. Turner expresses confidence the PPD are not targeting Black and Latino teens.

Furthermore, the police are "demonstrating fairness and professionalism" says Turner. Another key to the purported trend, more African-American and Latino juveniles turn to "avoiding activities" that lead to arrest.

How amazing that Cameron Tuner predicted conclusions solely on PPD records. Police falsify and manipulate conclusions all the time. Besides, even if the records are accurate, fewer arrests do not necessarily mean Black and Latino teens have changed, or that police are fair. The PPD might have ordered officers to reduce arrests in the two groups. Only God knows if police harassment, assault, battery, and torture of Black and Latino juveniles continue unabated.

As to fairness, crime tends to match racial and ethnic proportionality within populations. Arrests should also mirror the pattern. Turner did not challenge statistics from another article that put juvenile arrests at fifty percent and forty-one percent for Latinos and African-Americans respectively. At best, that leaves only a few percentage points for non-Latino white juveniles. Are arrests far out of proportion for Black, Latino, and non-Latino white teens? If so, it represents race-based policing for the first two biased favoritism for the latter. Fair? Decidedly not. As I see it,

Mike Jackson
Montebello, California

 

 

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