Federal Judge Declares NYC's 'Stop and Frisk' Program Unconstitutional

Judge rules NYPD's controversial practice can continue with added reforms, oversight.
21:18 | 08/12/13

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Transcript for Federal Judge Declares NYC's 'Stop and Frisk' Program Unconstitutional
This is a special report from -- -- -- -- what I'm damn tough learn New York with a CBC news did you special report a federal judge today ruled against the controversial stop and frisk policy of New York police. The courts and they -- police department procedure violates fourth and fourteenth amendment rights of citizens. The judge saying the searches were made with out reasonable suspicion and now New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg a big proponent of that policy along with the new York city police commissioner Ray Kelly yes -- by taking questions after announcing they would be appealing that decision let's listen it's. Aaron -- start in New York Observer -- how do you think this ruling at all threatens your overall legacy. I don't know -- is. Almost twelve years now with people who walked the streets of New York City without having to look over the shoulder I suspect that's probably -- pretty good legacy. Right here. -- Hamilton DNA and so the judge lists specifically seem to -- -- your comments earlier routes. These stops happening in places that -- be more involved in communities of color what do you do when he would want to matched the stops to Wear the reports of. I'm on I don't think there's any question that one of the problems we have and our society today is that. Victims and perpetrators of crime are disproportionately. Young minority men. That's just a fact you can look at the victims. You can look at who we are -- -- you can ask witnesses and victims for descriptions. That this is societal problem. And it is as any administration that's ever worked hard on that I think it is -- I've given my own money I've got others to give money the city taxpayers and put in money. We worked very hard to try to address that issue it is an issue. That is an issue across this country and it's an issue that is big a lot bigger than New York city's ability to handle -- but we're trying to do something about it. That has nothing to do with however -- we stop people we go to -- the reports of crime harm. Those unfortunately. Happen to be. Poor neighborhoods and minority neighborhoods. But that's not the original. Objective -- the intent or how we get there. We get there when there's a crime report -- and we will continue to do that that is our obligation when it comes to crime fighting. That is also incidentally where we tried to target our social services to address the problems. But -- different things. One has a long term thing the other is keeping us safe and keeping the city's so that it'll have a tax base. That's where the money comes from for trying to do something about a great societal problem. Will take the question right here we go -- Hi Tony -- -- of news and this is probably addressed to commissioner Kelly. Stop and frisk is one of many tactics -- used to reduce crime over the years. The judge had some rather strong language about the implementation of the tactic. This is stinging coming as it does lady -- ten years. To see this kind of this tactic. -- does the way she did it. Well she said we do many many things to address crime this is a tool that every police officer and America potentially use. And we reported here so we have we think accurate numbers but. This goes on throughout America but -- Crime is down a record lows. It is a function of many different program strategies and tactics that we can we put in place. What stopped and questioned and sometimes for -- is certainly a tool that every police officer needs. -- of America if you see something suspicious you pay your -- offices. Asked a question stop to inquire. And and to the extent that this significantly impacts on that I think you're never problem -- here but. Across America from you talk. About it stinging. Commissioner Kelly what about stinging the people whose lives tolerate risk. -- the legacy questioned what about the legacy of all the people in New York City. That's what we -- focusing on that's what our job is is to protect the people of this city and re can the people who work in our police department. On the role model for what you should be doing. We'll try to get some different questions. Young lady here let me get a microphone to. It's -- might Marcia Kramer from WCBS TV. Pointing to the judge recommended was a pilot program where police officers -- -- body video cameras saying death. That would. That would. Does show what was actually happening -- I ran into the president of the -- benevolent association. He said he didn't have any objection to that because that -- -- proved that the cops are doing. Doing the right thing I wonder how you feel about that as a pilot program was it would help you. I didn't. We can't have your cameraman. Follow you around in film things without people questioning whether they deliberately chose an angle -- they got the whole picture in. It would be a nightmare. Cameras don't exactly work that way in somebody's -- that camera on the lapel or -- The half of the a police officer -- -- the right where he didn't turn right where my god he deliberately did it. It is a -- solution that is. Not a solution to the problem. Let's go away all in the back there. -- -- Chris Robinson got lost on me talk about that drastic reductions in crime the city -- This year there's also been a drastic reduction in stops as well I think 50% in the first quarter and 20% overall. If it's changeable part of back keeping your perceive wire receive news from -- -- -- drop -- -- time. You begin answering. Yeah I think we've changed some of our tactics we re deployed people and training has president impact. As well but I would also submit to you -- some people say -- a dramatic increase. And the number of stops but clearly they weren't be recorded. Accurately in the ninety's and early 2000 we simply didn't have a system in place to do that police put the system in place -- more accurately recorded. And those stuff so the notion that it's gone up dramatically. Simply stated it is not case. And when we look at it. I don't think there's any of the city of any size that has all the procedures in place. To actually record what we do what what is done in that department how frequently -- -- Let me also point out that one of the reasons -- are lower now. -- we have less crime. Just have fewer reports of a group of kids that may have just committed a crime because that time didn't take place why. It's a circular thing you want to keep it going and the greatest thing in the world would be if we never recovered a gun and we never had a crime. Wouldn't that be wonderful. Not bad it would be the good thing let's get a question on the way back up and. -- moment your New York one news you mention that this was a few -- is. And some advocates but as we go around the city we find hundreds if not thousands of people who are upset by stop question and frisk. And many say they are fearful of the police something that judge mentioned in our opinion that. It often hampers their community police relations people are afraid of the police because of stop question -- Let let me just I would argue number one there always people that are afraid of police. Just some of them come from cultures with police and the enemy -- here people the police department our friends. But let me just point out they the mathematics a big numbers if 90% of the people are in favor of any one tactic. That means 800000. People are against it so if you want to go -- and find somebody to put on your television show you can do it. That doesn't have anything do what's what's really going on and also the public has not experts at policing. Personally -- I would rather have Ray Kelly. Then somebody who's just in the street successful I don't like that -- -- -- gentlemen up here we need a microphone. -- Djokovic Russian television international. Mayor why has your administration taken maintain such a strong position on this matter. -- stop and for us despite the resistance and outcry of the Republican on the course do you. Maine's W Willie -- we must we and unlike. Many other countries want to keep all of our citizens safe. And keep the crime rate down. And make sure that they get home to their families. And have the ability to go to court and protect themselves and don't get thrown -- -- as they do some places in the world. We'll pick got back there gentlemen in the red shirt. The stronger for commissioner Kelly arm to stop and frisk him -- now is a policy does it. I'd change in some form is it -- what happens pending appeal we're still analyzing his decision and obviously you're going to rely on -- apartment to. Give us -- -- specific interpretation of what happens next. Fact that it there is a while before the -- -- that to the judge has ordered testing time to get into office and then. And to set some regulations so you knock on the scene -- change in tactics overnight. Next questions and gentleman next to him. Let's check -- five. Just given the length of appeal is a lot more likely that stopper Chris we'll continue while you're mayor and something we're going to the next mayor. Boy I hope so because I wouldn't want to be responsible for a lot of people dying. -- the young ladies -- Melissa -- and -- four mr. mayor one of the things the judge mentions is the number of people who are stopped to end up being innocent apparently. And perhaps is a basic question but I feel like I've heard you over the years justify stopped and -- by saying that the people who -- stopped. Basically fit the description of -- yes but it. That doesn't mean that a criminal. But it seems that today and over the in recent months you've said you've expanded that definition to include people who. You want to deter them from crime they'll be afraid to carry a gun or -- might be planning to back. Is a result of doing that. We'll take a microphone thank you. He killed. That is a result I think that kids say oh I might be stopped but that's not where we start out. We only go where there is a report of a crime. And the people that are there fit the description. War the police offices sees something that looks suspicious. It is true. That also we think it is probably a deterrent to kids for carrying a gun because they know. If they happen to be in an area where -- crime was committed. And they happen to roughly fit the description which is generally pretty broad. Of the perpetrate they could be stopped and they don't wanna have a -- in the hands we'll go back there are. The -- glasses. Makes let me WOR radio 24/7 news commissioner Kelly. -- this to go into effect wore a monitor to be put in place how would that change what you have to do and how that -- fighting crime in New York. Well again we still looking I haven't read to hold a decision -- -- -- Things this morning so I simply having any opportunity. To -- the -- look decision but we're going to wait for direction from -- -- department as far as our reaction to the to the judges. Decision. -- that this gentleman right here. He heard speaker when this morning said this is just another reason why we didn't. Inspector general why now. -- -- why do you continue to oppose and I GE. Like this. Second lateral like this it's sort of defies imagination of the City Council would go on with one of the worst pieces of legislation they never come up. Why on earth would they pass this. Senate had passed that bill after what the judge said. Let's wait and see what the courts say but it makes no sense whatsoever to go and say this is an excuse to pass a law so we're going to -- -- a layer of mine it is the police know that he helped take the microphone thank you can't take your microphone and we've -- you one question I'm sorry because we have a lot of people wanna talk. Anything -- veto -- I have no idea you have to talk you talk I'm not I'm not voting in the City Council that's one out of the question that doesn't make a lot of sense you should ask the City Council. They're the ones that do it but it doesn't make any sense to pass the law we have enough problems now you're a police -- you have to know. What orders to follow. If somebody pulls a gun and you want to get home to your family. You don't have time to say will not wait a second the commissioners said one thing the mom that said another NE IG said another. But -- time you're dead. -- I'd -- to see you go to the funeral and explained to the family why -- -- -- why -- son or husband -- father. He's not coming home at night will take this gentleman right over here and -- I think we probably have enough. Commissioner Rocco -- -- from the daily news. Commission most stocks do not involve. People being stopped because they matched description of someone having committed a crime he is my witness or victim. With that said have you seen the ruling affecting the great majority stopped stocks -- have -- For instance is the first movement is made or someone is in front of a -- -- location I I think really we have to analyze the decision before it can answer them. -- question and intelligently. Michael to have some -- I'm just -- two things the Supreme Court decisions that the mayor referred to. Emphasized over and over again you have to take a look at the end of late -- circumstance. Each particular stop. To determine whether or not it is constitutional. Each individual style. What happened in this case. Is the judge looked at the roughly eight and a half million stops. All over. -- something like eight year period. And decided. That. At least nine -- according to the plaintiff's expert at least 90%. Of those stops. -- clearly is lawful. And that another 45%. Might have been -- you couldn't tell. And therefore the New York police department under this ruling. Has been put into a monitor ship. Because. All the stops and frisks that are that have occurred over -- over this time period. Roughly 5%. Were found by an expert. To be illegal. That expert based that conclusion. Only on the pieces of paper that the police department filed. And we that forms that are are filled out and we believe that could be a fundamental error. Has I said before it is the commissioner has reiterated. As soon as we have the legal right. To seek an appeal and to -- and to say judge while the appeal is pending stop this order we will do so. Let me -- the last question young lady here who was desperately trying to follow up with further questions. He's trying to I was trying to ask you basically -- in this part of the issue -- -- now admitting that you aren't targeting people who you know that you think may not have committed the -- you and you couldn't be more wrong. He did not read what I said I didn't say anything like Thatcher trying to create a story that does not exist. We go where somebody fits the description. Or somebody. Looks like they're doing something covering summing up suspicious activity. There is just no question that that probably also impacts the way other people. Decide what to do when they get up in the morning whether the take their gun in their pocket don't leave big -- at home. And the fact that you get fewer guns on the streets. We believe says that they are leaving their guns at home there is no evidence that the number guns being sold in this country -- the number of guns being. Exported to New York or import it into New York has gone down quite the contrary. -- numbers seem to say they're more guns but we're not getting them why. The only explanation that I can come up with is. The kids. And if I happen to act in the ways that some police officer with a lot of training. In his or her judgment thinks is suspicious I'm gonna get stopped and I don't want to get stopped with a gun in my pocket. And that's exactly what it says. Rich Lamb last question and so I'm. So I didn't see him from. Well you've already identified -- so Rich Lamb WCBS finalists and all the time that's. -- this question is for mr. Cardozo. How Clinton and are used as -- second circuit will reverse and are you prepared to go beyond. Well if if this doesn't reverse of course were prepared to go beyond that we got to take this one step at a time obviously. We believe the judges made a number of fundamental errors in one of which I alluded to before a number of Paris that the trial we we believe -- the mayor said there are a lot of things that occurred in the course of the trial even before the trial. That. Suggested we were not getting a fair trial and we're gonna -- bring all those things detention the appellate court. Finally give this young lady I did see it before and set I would -- -- Hello getting -- CNN I just wanted to understand the timeframe of the appeal. When does that happen. The first step is. That we have to -- that the commissioners and we probably have to meet with a monitor. Hamas and discuss. The various issues that that are sent out in the opinion. -- had had discussions within. As soon as the miners entered any order that requires us to do something specifically. We will then be seeking in -- a stay a from the second circuit I can't predict precisely how long that that will take. Once that appeal -- filed and it's obviously going to be up to the court to decide to schedule. Let me finish up by saying this is. For a city that is become. So -- nobody could have imagined that makes us the poster child for the country and maybe even beyond the country. This is a very dangerous decision. Made by a judge that I think just does not understand how policing works. And what is compliant with the US constitution. As determined by the Supreme Court. We believe. We have done exactly what the courts allow in the constitution allow us to do. And we will continue to do everything we can to keep this city safe. I worry for my kids and I worry for your kids I worry for you and I worry for many. Crime can come back any time. The criminals thinks that they're going to get away with things just cannot let that happen. Thank you. And that was -- city mayor Michael Bloomberg along with. New York police department commissioner Ray Kelly. With some pretty strong very blunt reactions. To a federal judge ruling that the city stop and fit frisk program. Is unconstitutional. In violation of the fourth and fourteenth amendments to stop and frisk program essentially allows police to search anyone. Regardless of whether police leave their crime in fact was committed. The federal judge -- in fact that that policy can only continue on if the police department follows reforms as stricter guidelines. For moving forward -- stop and frisk program. But as you just heard right there from the mayor and from the police commissioner and and also as with the New York city's corporation counsel saying -- back -- that decision. Will be appealed going forward now to the second circuit. And we of course went to see how that will -- is certainly a blow to some guidelines and some administrative issues that the mayor. -- really made his hallmark and reforming crime and -- and and and the guidelines throughout the city over his terms. We have a complete report on abcnews.com. And a full report also on world news with Diane Sawyer tonight. For now I'm down Chrysler New York with -- ABC news digital special report. This has been a special report from me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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