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Riko Guzman said today on the steps of City Hall that when he was 11 years old he was with friends on his Bronx neighborhood sidewalk â€śdoing nothingâ€ť when a police officer stopped and frisked him.
â€śI was approached by my own heroes,â€ť said the Bronx member of the Justice Committee, a Latino-led organization that works on police accountability.
Guzman joined with other Latino and African American local elected officials, community leaders and reformers earlier today to urge passage of a package of City Council bills that could change the way the New York Police Department does its job.
U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez said the police use of stop-and-frisk is doing little for public safety. Instead, community members â€śview the police as a threat and enemy, not as an ally to make their community safer,â€ť she said.
The bills, known collectively as the The Community Safety Act, are sponsored by City Councilman Jumaane Williams of Brooklyn, who noted that advocates of the bills are â€śnot anti-police.â€ť