Stop, Question, and Frisk Study

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The Stop, Question, and Frisk study examines the impact of the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) stop, question, and frisk policies and practices on young people and families in the most highly patrolled areas in New York City.

New Study from the Center on Youth Justice

Coming of Age with Stop and Frisk:
Experiences, Self-Perceptions, and Public Safety Implications


Amid the debate about stop and frisk in New York City, its relationship to reductions in crime, and concerns about racial profiling, one question has gone largely unexplored: How does being stopped by police, and the frequency of those stops, affect those who experience them at a young age?

Here is what we learned from the young people we surveyed. >>

 

Prior research on the NYPD’s stop, question, and frisk policies has focused largely on attempts to understand the policy and its implementation. The earlier studies examined the descriptive characteristics of people stopped, stop locations, and resulting police activities. Yet little is known about how the people affected by the policy—particularly young people of color in the most highly patrolled neighborhoods of New York City—experience it.

The project—developed by Vera's Center on Youth Justice (CYJ) in consultation with the Pipeline Crisis: Winning Strategies for Young Black Men, a project for which Vera serves as fiscal sponsor—was funded primarily by the Rockefeller Foundation and yielded a final report in September 2013. The study measured not only the extent and nature of stop, question, and frisk interactions between police and adolescents, young adults, and their families, but also the relationship between these interactions with the police and people’s perceptions of police and of themselves. CYJ researchers will collect a combination of interview and survey data over the summer of 2012. The researchers are conducting a series of in-depth interviews with young adults and their families living in high-stop areas, focusing on their experiences with police, their views of justice, and how the practice affects self-perceptions. They will survey 500 young adults in high-stop areas. The survey questions are designed to measure participants’ attitudes toward police, themselves, and their willingness to report a crime.

Why study how youth are affected by New York City’s stop, question, and frisk policy?

The practice of stop, question, and frisk plays an undeniably large role in police/community relations in New York City. In 2011, the NYPD recorded roughly 685,000 stops—an increase of 12 percent in one year, and of about 400 percent from 2001. Police did not charge the majority of people they stopped with any delinquent or criminal activity. Moreover, the practice appears to disproportionately affect people of color. While researchers have investigated both the prevalence of such stops and the race of those stopped, there has been much less social science research on how the people affected by the practice experience it.

For additional information, contact Mary Crowley, director, Communications Department, (212) 376-3172.

Coming of Age with Stop and Frisk: Experiences, Self-Perceptions, and Public Safety Implications
09/19/2013
Amid the debate about stop and frisk in New York City, its relationship to reductions in crime, and concerns about racial profiling, one question has gone largely unexplored: How does being stopped by police, and the frequency of those stops, affect those who experience them at a young age?  In New...
Just 'Cause vol. 19, no. 3
12/01/2012
Just 'Cause is the quarterly newsletter of the Vera Institute of Justice and is produced by the Communications Department. This issue includes the following articles: "Translating Stop, Question, and Frisk Numbers into Neighborhood Impact," by Melissa Cipollone;  "Cracking the Case on How...
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