As we’ve seen all over the news, racial profiling often tragically results in law enforcement treating people of color in different ways than they would treat white people.
And unfortunately, it can happen to you!
Are you up against criminal charges in McAllen, Texas? It’s critical to understand how racial profiling can impact your criminal defense case.
Racial Profiling Defined
Racial profiling is defined as the consideration of race, ethnicity, or national origin by an officer of the law in deciding when and how to intervene in an enforcement capacity.
A study reported by the Washington Post revealed that black people are more likely to be pulled over and searched than white people. The article reports extensive findings that prove that “black and Latino drivers are more likely to be searched once they have been pulled over.” In one study, “about 2 percent of white motorists were searched, vs. 6 percent of black drivers and 7 percent of Latinos.”
A Texas study showed that while black people comprised 20% of one county’s population, they “made up 62% of the wrongful drug convictions.”
Criminal Defenses Available to Victims of Racial Profiling
When you’re accused of a crime because of your race, you have a solid argument in your favor. A criminal defense attorney will walk you through a few common strategies to have your charges reduced or dropped. In many cases where law enforcement acted unlawfully, you’ll have the following options:
- You can ask for a motion to suppress. This makes sense if police acted unlawfully when gathering evidence against you. For example, if police stopped you because of their racial prejudice, then evidence that they find could be deemed unlawful and unusable in court. If granted, a motion to suppress will prohibit the court from using evidence against you that was gathered unlawfully. A motion to suppress is also useful in a case where police made an unlawful search or seizure.
- You can file a civil rights lawsuit against the party who treated you unjustly.
If You’re Unfairly Targetted Because Of Racial Profiling:
Remember that you have the following constitutional rights:
- The right to remain silent (the Fifth Amendment). You don’t have to give a statement to the police. You don’t have to answer questions posed to you by law enforcement. Ask to speak to your attorney first.
- The right to privacy (the Fourth Amendment). You have the right to be free from “unreasonable searches and seizures.”
- The right to legal counsel (Sixth Amendment). You have the right to an attorney of your choice. Contact a criminal defense attorney ASAP to get started on bringing justice to your case.
Criminal charges put your future in jeopardy. There’s no reason why you should let unlawful police behavior and racial profiling win! Criminal defense attorney Juan Tijerina is ready to fight for your constitutional rights! Contact our McAllen, Texas office by calling (956) 261-5609 or (512) 900-1126 or sending a message online.
Se Habla Español
4016 N. 22nd Street
McAllen, Texas 78504
Phone: (956) 261-5609
Phone: (512) 900-1126