Nashville police make changes to traffic stops

Nashville police make changes to traffic stops

Nashville police have been making adjustments to the way they conduct traffic stops.

A study back in 2018 found that police in the city of Nashville stop more than twice as many people than other big cities do. These stops were conducted in hopes to eliminate more crime, but more recent studies reveal something new.

Police stops, in fact, don’t actually help prevent crime in any way.

This is big news especially for Nashville police considering police stops have been a core strategy of the department. The goal was to perform more traffic stops in high-crime areas to help reduce it.

Flawed ways

Though the police department was no doubt only trying to reduce crime and help the community, their actions might say otherwise.

A different study back in 2016 found that black drivers are stopped at a 44 percent higher rate than white drivers are. For non-moving violations, black drivers are 68 percent more likely to be stopped than white drivers.

This may be completely unintentional, but the numbers are quite high considering Nashville’s population. The driving age population consists of 58 percent white people and only 27 percent black.

Making way for changes

The debate to make changes to the strategy had been going on for a few years now. After multiple studies, including one called “Driving While Black”, traffic stops have been on the decline. “Driving While Black” was a study done in 2016 which accused the city of racial discrimination.

While racial discrimination was not addressed, it’s factual that stops have still been lowering greatly in numbers.

Between October 1st of 2016 and February 28th of 2017, there was a whopping number of 105,616 traffic stops conducted. This number is more than twice the amount of traffic stops made in other big cities like Charlotte, NC.

As of October of last year and February of this, only 39,073 stops have been made. It’s clear that the police department has made a shift in their strategy to prevent crime.

“Simply doing traffic stops and lighting up an area with blue lights isn’t necessarily the most effective strategy,” East Precinct Commander David Imhoff said. “Strategies evolve, crime patterns evolve, we have to evolve with the times.”

With that said, it’s being made evident that the police department is evolving and making new strategies. Yet, the department itself insists that no changes have been made despite the drastic drop in the number of stops.

New strategies?

One known fact is that the North Precinct patrol officers are now required to spend at least half an hour speaking with neighbors & children. This is helping to build better relationships within the community.

Aside from that, there’s no known new strategies or evidence of any. There’s no doubt that the department is still coming up with new ways to help stop crime though.

Sara Farrington

A Canadian born writer currently based in the United States, Sara's love for literature has been prevelant since she was just a child. With a passion and drive for living a full life, Sara is currently travelling the world with her boyfriend.

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