Traffic stop law designed to prevent racial profiling to go into effect Saturday

A new state law designed to prevent racial profiling goes into effect Saturday. It was inspired by a Bridgeport man who hopes the law will serve as a model for other states.

News 12 Staff

Jun 29, 2023, 9:25 PM

Updated 335 days ago

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A new state law designed to prevent racial profiling goes into effect Saturday. It was inspired by a Bridgeport man who hopes the law will serve as a model for other states.
Kirk Wesley, of Bridgeport, says he has been a victim of racial profiling during police traffic stops, which has added an extra layer of anxiety to driving.
"Being pulled over is a very scary situation," said Wesley. "And I think a lot of times what helps with that anxiety is knowing why you're being stopped."
Sen. Herron Gaston and state Rep. Fred Gee, both of Bridgeport and both freshman lawmakers, say it was Wesley who lobbied them to create new legislation, an act requiring police officers to provide a driver with the reason for a traffic stop.
Gov. Ned Lamont has now signed the measure into law.
"This is going to require that they do tell you why you're being pulled over so as to get rid of some of those presuppositions and stereotypes that might be embedded in the implicit bias of the officer," said Gaston.
Wesley says this law will help keep drivers and police safe.
The enactment comes after Lamont announced an investigation is being launched in light of a new audit that found there's "a high likelihood" hundreds of Connecticut State Police troopers falsified traffic tickets, allegedly as part of an effort to make it appear racial profiling occurred at a lesser rate than it actually did.
Supporters of the new law say it will move Connecticut forward away from an era when men of color are three times as likely to be pulled over by police.
Below is a statement from Connecticut State Police:


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