Resource: "Driving While Black" in Maryland


February 2, 2010

American Civil Liberties Union

The ACLU has been waged in a battle to eliminate the racial profiling practices of the Maryland State Police since the early 1990s.

In 1993, the ACLU brought a class-action lawsuit against MSP on behalf of Robert L. Wilkins, an African American attorney who was stopped, detained and searched by the MSP for no apparent reason. Documents showed that MSP illegally targeted African-American motorists for stops and searches along Maryland’s highways. In 1995, the parties entered into a settlement under which MSP, among other things, agreed to collect data on traffic stops and searches and take measures to prevent racial profiling. Two years later, the federal court overseeing the case ruled that MSP was continuing to target non-white motorists for traffic stops and searches, in violation of the Wilkins agreement