Black Lives Matter activists gave Philadelphia police men’s underwear Tuesday to protest the department’s alleged practice of “stop and fondle.”
Activist Asa Khalif, along with other Black Lives Matter Pennsylvania members, gathered outside the Philadelphia police headquarters to deliver their gift, reports NBC Philadelphia.
“It is illegal to stop and frisk. It is illegal to go into someone’s underwear and touch their penis. Touch their buttocks. You think it’s common practice and it’s legal, but it’s not,” Khalif screamed into a megaphone.
The Philadelphia Police Department’s alleged practice of “stop and fondle” was first revealed by the Philadelphia Daily News. Multiple black men claimed that police officers conducted invasive body searches by going through their underwear and patting down their private parts. Police Capt. Sekou Kinebrew said he did not know about any such allegations, but said that people should file a complaint if they have any issues.
Captain George Kappe tried talking to activists outside the police headquarters, saying he also wasn’t familiar with the news article about the alleged practice of “stop and fondle.”
“We are allowed to frisk for officer safety,” the captain added.
Khalif said that the searches were the same as “sexual assault.” He plans to help black men who have been allegedly fondled by police officers get special counseling to help them through it.
“It’s humiliating. Dehumanizing,” he said. “I understand the feeling of hopelessness. It brings up all types of issues with black youth especially.”
The Philadelphia Police Department is still looking into the allegations surrounding “stop and fondle” and plans to protect people’s right to protest the issue, the department told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
“The department is looking into the allegations that have been made regarding the attached article; so at this time I would not be at liberty to discuss particular facts about this case; with that being said the department does have a policy on how strip/cavity searches are to be conducted when needed,” the department said to The DCNF in a statement.
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