HARTFORD – The Connecticut Racial Profiling Prohibition Project today released the results of its investigation into Connecticut State Police traffic stop records. That audit revealed that in recent years:
- Connecticut State Police submitted at least 25,966 false and inaccurate traffic stop records;
- the majority of all Connecticut State Police troops (seven of 11 total), including the entire Eastern District, overreported traffic stops, which disproportionately reported stops of white people;
- of hundreds of thousands of records, Connecticut State Police underreported at least 2.5% and disproportionately underreported traffic stops of people of color;
- at least 311 troopers and 76 constables submitted false and inaccurate traffic stop records, and some of those individuals remain employed by the Connecticut State Police.
The following is a reaction from ACLU of Connecticut public policy and advocacy director Claudine Constant:
“At its core, the Alvin P. Penn Racial Profiling Prohibition Act is about protecting Black, Latinx, and other drivers of color by spotting and preventing racist traffic stops by police. This audit reveals a breathtaking disrespect for the state’s racial profiling prohibition law by Connecticut State Police employees and, even worse, for that law’s goal of reducing systemic racism in policing.
Whether intentional or not, the impact of police falsifying and inaccurately reporting records is the same: police have obscured the true information about how often they stop divers of color compared to white drivers. According to this report, for years, Connecticut troopers have been over-stating how often they stop white drivers and under-stating how often they stop Black, Latinx, and other drivers of color, with the end result that racial disparities in police traffic stops have most likely been worse than reported. According to this report, some of the Connecticut State Police employees who submitted more than 200 false or inaccurate records each remain on the Connecticut State Police payroll.
Police cannot police themselves. We urge swift and transparent accountability for all individual Connecticut State Police employees who falsified traffic stop records, and this report also requires system-wide accountability for the Connecticut State Police. We also call upon the Connecticut General Assembly to introduce and pass legislation to end secondary traffic stops in Connecticut, in order to cut this problem off at its root while honoring the goals of the Alvin W. Penn Racial Profiling Prohibition Act.”
Today’s investigation by the Racial Profiling Prohibition Project was prompted by an August 2022 report by Hearst Connecticut Media, which revealed that Connecticut State Police had investigated four troopers in 2018 for falsifying traffic tickets.