Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. filed a legal brief for a court case about New York City’s stop-and-frisk program — but his brief failed to take a pro-or-con stance or make an argument about the Constitution.
Stop-and-frisk lets police who suspect someone is about to commit a crime to stop and question that person. The officer then can search the person for weapons if further suspicions are raised.
Mr. Holder’s legal brief, filed at 11 p.m. Wednesday — just beating a Thursday deadline — did not speak to the constitutional aspects of the policy, United Press International reported. Rather, it said only that if Judge Shira A. Scheindlin ruled the city broke law with its policy, then she also should require that someone be appointed to monitor the police department and help officers shape new enforcement policies.
“The experience of the United States in enforcing police reform injunctions teaches that the appointment of an independent monitor is a critically important asset,” Mr. Holder said in his brief, UPI reported.
The policy is under fire for reportedly being used to discriminate against minorities. The judge is widely expected to issue a ruling against the police, UPI reported.
Mr. Holder had promised to take action on the case and get the Justice Department involved.