Immigrant Advocacy Group Accuses Baltimore Police Of Racial Profiling

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Alleged racial profiling in Baltimore. An immigrant advocacy group claims Baltimore police are singling out people they believe to be in the U.S. illegally.

Pat Warren has more on the allegations.

Casa de Maryland wants Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to sign an executive order prohibiting police from targeting people whose legal status may be in doubt.

Estaban Amaya came to City Hall with a petition to do away with racial profiling.

“This is all the petitions I have, all 1,000 signatures,” Amaya said.

He was a victim of crime.

“Guys, American guys, they beat me up,” Amaya said. “They beat me up, they steal money from my wallet so I call the police.”

Police took a report, but he doesn’t believe they followed up.

“I haven’t heard anything from the officer,” Amaya said.

In another case, a man identifying himself as a robbery victim says when police were called, he was arrested.

“In the moment that I needed the help of the police the most, they arrested me and kept me locked up for more than 12 hours,” he said.

His complaint is before the Baltimore Civilian Review Board.

With this petition and the support of various church and civic groups, Casa de Maryland is asking Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to sign an executive order prohibiting racial profiling.

“We know Baltimore is better than that and can be better than that and we want the mayor to put it in writing,” said Susana Flores, Casa de Maryland.

“I’m a big supporter of Casa de Maryland,” said Rawlings-Blake.

She would not say, however, if she would issue an executive order on profiling.

“I want to make sure—I know that in some other jurisdictions and I’ve asked them to provide that information — an executive order has been appropriate. I want to make sure what we do for Baltimore is appropriate for Baltimore and that’s why I look forward to sitting down with them,” she said.

A police spokesman says complaints against officers can be filed with Internal Affairs.

There’s no word on when that meeting between the mayor and Casa de Maryland will be scheduled.

More than 30 organizations are supporting Casa de Maryland’s request.

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