A lawsuit announced on Monday accuses Beverly Hills police of racially profiling nearly 1,100 black people who were pulled over during traffic stops in the wealthy city in California between August 2019 and August 2021, reported The Associated Press (AP) on Tuesday.
Out of a total of 1,088 black motorists stopped, only two were convicted of crimes, attorney Benjamin Crump said at a news conference, adding about a third of all arrests made during the period involved blacks, who make up only 1.5 percent of the city’s population. The suit seeks 500 million U.S. dollars in damages.
The city denied the allegations, saying in a statement that “the statistics presented referencing the number of convictions is a mischaracterization of the evidence in this case.”
“In addition, the 1,088 arrests referenced include people cited and released, not just custodial arrests,” the statement said.
“The City of Beverly Hills is an international destination that always welcomes visitors from across the country and around the world,” it noted. “The role of the Beverly Hills Police Department is to enforce the law, regardless of race.”