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Blacks in US more likely to get arrested by police: Study

27 July 2016 19:36

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Blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans are more likely to get arrested by police compared to white and Asian people in the United States, new research finds.

“Blacks, Native Americans and Hispanics had higher stop/arrest rates per 10,000 population than white non-Hispanics and Asians,” said Ted Miller of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation in Maryland, who led the study.

“US police killed or injured an estimated 55,400 people in 2012,” Miller and his colleagues wrote in the journal Injury Prevention.

“On an average day, three people die and 150 people are treated at a hospital because they are injured by police,” Miller told NBC News.

His team pulled together statistics from wherever they could find them, including the FBI, state police websites, hospital records, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and two investigative series by the Washington Post and Guardian newspapers.

Blacks make up about 13 percent of the American population, but accounted for 28 percent of arrests, the study found.

“Those with the highest arrest rates per 10,000 population were ages 15-29 years, black, Latino or Native American,” the team wrote.

“Blacks have high arrest and stop rates, and per capita [among the general population] are much more likely than whites to die at the hands of police,” the team found.

However, once police stopped an individual, they were just as likely to hurt or injure whites as people of any other race, they found.

Miller argued that crime and poverty are interconnected and one reason police arrest blacks at a much higher rate is because many live in low-income neighborhoods.

“We know that low-income neighborhoods have more crime,” Miller said. And minorities are more likely to have low incomes. “Some disparities could be due to income rather than race,” he said.

Statistics show that there is a great amount of violence when police stop Americans in general, and it’s up to police to reduce that violence, Miller noted.

“You and I might get stopped once in our lives. The police stop people every day. They need to be the ones trained to de-escalate,” he said. “It’s important for people not to make police angry, but it’s also important for police to control their emotions.”

The study comes amid renewed scrutiny of the use of deadly police force on African-Americans.

Over the past month, thousands of demonstrators flooded the streets of major cities across the country to decry the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile at the hands of police officers.

According to a new survey, racial tensions in the US are at the highest level since the 1992 Los Angeles riots that were started after a jury acquitted four white police officers of the use of excessive force in the videotaped arrest and beating of African American Rodney King.

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