The ACLU and several minority rights groups called Thursday for Gov. Rod Blagojevich to end the state police practice of stopping motorists and asking them to agree to be searched.
The groups based their request on an analysis of state-mandated reporting by police agencies documenting the race of motorists they stop for so-called “consent searches.”
The groups say the data for 2007 once again shows that Hispanic and black drivers are stopped more often than whites.
But they say the data includes a new, important statistic that shows police searches of white motorists are more likely to turn up contraband than searches of minority motorists. The groups say that is further evidence of bias against minorities.
The groups made their request in a letter delivered to the governor’s Chicago office Thursday morning. There was no immediate comment from the governor or the state police.
Other groups joining with the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois include Rainbow/PUSH, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, the Chicago chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the Illinois conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.