The ACLU of Pennsylvania and the law firm of Kairys, Rudovsky, Messing & Feinberg filed a federal class action on November 4, 2010, on behalf of eight African-American and Latino men who were stopped by Philadelphia police officers solely on the basis of their race or ethnicity. The suit alleges that thousands of people each year are illegally stopped, frisked, searched, and detained by the Philadelphia Police Department as part of its stop-and-frisk policy.

On June 21, 2011, the city of Philadelphia and the ACLU announced that they had reached a settlement agreement. As part of the settlement, the Philadelphia Police Department will collect data on all stop and frisks and store this information in an electronic data base. It will also provide officers with necessary training and supervision with respect to stop and frisk practices. Additionally the agreement establishes a monitoring system in which the police department, plaintiffs' counsel, and an independent court-appointed monitor, Dean JoAnne A. Epps, from the Beasley School of Law at Temple University, will review and analyze the data. Dean Epps will have the authority to recommend appropriate practices and policies to ensure that stops and frisks by the PPD are in compliance with the Constitution.

Press Releases


Paul Messing & David Rudovsky (Kairys, Rudovsky, Messing & Feinberg); Seth Kreimer (University of Pennsylvania School of Law); Mary Catherine Roper (ACLU-PA)

Date filed

November 4, 2010


U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania