Racial Profiling

David A. Harris

Professor of Law
John E. Murray Faculty Scholar, University of Pittsburgh
Reforming Criminal Justice Vol. 2

This chapter will explore the topic of racial profiling by police. First, the chapter defines the term racial profiling for purposes of the discussion. Next, the chapter describes the points at which racial profiling arises in law enforcement, and the legal tools and incentives that drive it. It then describes the harm that racial profiling does to people, and to the criminal justice system as a whole. The chapter explores the cost to public safety that racial profiling entails, and closes with five concrete suggestions for combatting this long-term problem.