Predictive Software Points Cops To Black Neighborhoods

Predpol predictive policing system sends cops to concentrate on Black/poor neighborhoods.

Researchers from the Human Rights Data Analysis Group purchased a copy of the Predpol predictive software, which predicts areas cops have to police. The tool, which police departments around the country have spent a lot of money on, was given Oakland’s 2010 arrest data by the researchers and asked to predict areas where crime would be in 2011.

The tool processed the arrest data then boldly affirmed that the Oakland Police Department had to set and concentrate their patrols in a neighborhood that is Black and poor. On the other hand, the data from the National Crime Victimization Survey proves that crime spread out across the state, which means that if the Oakland Police Department had gone with Predpol’s prediction in 2011, they would have just incarcerated a number of African-Americans for nothing.

The bad prediction the tool provides makes it possible for police officers to over-police Black neighborhoods and white people are left under-policed. The tool aggravates the problem of coerced guilty pleas and it goes right into the same category of racially biased automated sentencing systems that see to Black people getting ridiculously longer prison sentences than white people.

“If predictive policing means some individuals are going to have more police involvement in their life, there needs to be a minimum of transparency,” Adam Schwartz, a senior staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said. “Until they do that, the public should have no confidence that the inputs and algorithms are a sound basis to predict anything.”

Schwartz went on to say that predictive policing isn’t something that the police are ready to use at the moment because of the racially-disparate impact it brings.

“What we want for police to do is not to be putting in place new systems of predictive policing until a lot more study is done and safeguards are put in place. Frequently these systems shouldn’t be adopted at all,” he added.

It’s obvious that this program was created by a racist; a racist law enforcement officer would be so glad to have this tool. It’s appalling to see Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf striving to appropriate funds in order to acquire Predpol for the city. The tool is completely inaccurate and shouldn’t be used in any police department in the country.

Source: Boingboing
Thank you!
You have successfully subscribed!
We will be glad to enlighten you on
the life of the Black community.
Do you want to be notified?
Add meetup