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Walking While Black

Pedestrian Enforcement and Racial Profiling

Race can affect the enforcement of laws on a wide range of ordinary conduct, from driving to bicycling. Here’s our look at whether that kind of profiling is taking place with Jacksonville’s pedestrian statutes.


Walking While Black

Jacksonville’s enforcement of pedestrian violations raises concerns that it’s another example of racial profiling.

Other Entries

Jacksonville Sheriff Admits Race May Have Played a Role in Ticket Writing

The sheriff says blacks were not targeted for pedestrian tickets but “implicit bias” might have factored into enforcement by officers.

Sheriff’s Officers Working Black Section of Jacksonville to Get Bias Training

The effort comes as Jacksonville has seen controversial police shootings, arrests of activists and calls to suspend pedestrian ticketing in light of racial disparities.

Jacksonville Sheriff Criticizes Our Reporting. We Respond.

Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams issued a press release Friday alleging inaccuracies in our latest story on pedestrian tickets. Read our full response.

Jacksonville City Council President and Local Public Defender Call for Suspension of Pedestrian Ticket Writing

A legal bulletin by the Jacksonville state attorney supports the finding that sheriff’s officers have been issuing hundreds of tickets in error, a disproportionate number of them to blacks.

Florida Police Issue Hundreds of Bad Pedestrian Tickets Every Year Because They Don’t Seem to Know the Law

The tickets for failing to cross in a crosswalk don’t just carry fines; they can damage credit rating and lead to the suspensions of driver’s licenses. A Florida Times-Union/ProPublica examination shows lots of them never should have been issued.

Pedestrian Tickets Lead to Hundreds of Suspended Driver’s Licenses

In Jacksonville, not paying your jaywalking ticket can cost you the ability to get to school or work. Again, blacks bear a disproportionate impact.

Local Lawmakers and Civil Rights Groups Call for Suspending Pedestrian Tickets in Jacksonville

Concerns about targeted enforcement against African Americans come after a Florida Times-Union/ProPublica investigation.

One Officer, Scores of Tickets and a Familiar Racial Disparity

C.J. Brown wrote four times as many pedestrian tickets as any other officer in Jacksonville over the last five years. Most of them went to blacks. His boss says he’s just “good at his job.”

The Ticketed Feel Targeted

A truck driver, a mother, a lawyer and a number of young men offer their accounts of walking while black.

How (Not) to Cross the Street in Jacksonville

The city’s population is 29 percent black, but black pedestrians received 55 percent of the pedestrian tickets issued from 2012 to July 2017. Looking at each type of ticket issued reveals even bigger disparities.

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