FERNDALE (WWJ) – The ACLU of Michigan says the Ferndale Police Department needs to investigate why its officers are ticketing a disproportionate number of black motorists when they make up less than ten percent of the city’s population.
Based on a review of department data over a 16-month period, the American Civil Liberties Union says African Americans made up approximately 60 percent of the motorists ticketed by Ferndale officers when the race of the driver was known.READ MORE: Michigan Legislature OKs School Accounts Destined For Veto
Mark Fancher, an ACLU attorney handling the case, told WWJ’s Stephanie Davis, the numbers don’t add up.
“It’s not a situation that should be allowed to persist without having some answers,” said Fancher. “Even if there is not racial profiling, these types of numbers are easy to interpret by many as some type of an indication of racial bias.”READ MORE: HUD Official Tours Detroit, Sees City's Use Of Federal Funds
The ACLU said it plans to continue investigating and wants more information from the police department.
“That was a red flag for us, and led us right to them and to ask that they work with us in trying to determine, whether in fact, there is a racial profiling problem and, if not, what accounts for this racial dis-proportionality?”MORE NEWS: High Stakes Meeting, No. 6 Michigan vs No. 8 Michigan State
Ferndale Police Department deny any suggestion that it engaged in racial profiling. And its Police Chief Timothy Collins says he received a letter from the ACLU Tuesday and is ready to meet with the organization.