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Letters to the Editor

Editor:

I have lived in Utah for the past 17 years and I have had my share of traffic stops by Salt Lake Police and UHP. I have even had my share by Summit County as well. Some are legit stops but others have been downright insulting and very much racial profiling. The reason that many of the cases of racial profiling cannot be proven is that many people of color do not report them. I know that I have lived in the Summit County area now for almost six years and I have had many of the UHP to stop me and some are nice but others are downright rude.

I was given a citation for failure to stop at a sign coming out of Browns Canyon. I saw the officer when I came to the stop. I looked both ways and proceeded into the intersection. I passed the officer (UHP) and waved and, next thing I know, he speeds out coming after me. He asked for my license and registration and proof of insurance. Never once did he acknowledge what I had done until he comes back with a ticket to sign.

Now today I am proceeding to work as I’ve done for the past six years and I get stopped by Summit County. I had passed the officer, not speeding or anything, and she gets behind me and starts running my plates, pulls me over and she tells me that there is a person that owns this vehicle and she calls my name and I acknowledge that it is me. She asks for my license and registration. Again the officer did not acknowledge what violation I had done. She comes back to my vehicle and says that there are a few people with my name and there is a warrant for their arrest. So I ask why is it that I am driving along and because I do not fit the geographic area (Park City, Kamas, Summit County) and I’m black that means I am to have my plates run and then stopped.

There was no reason for the many stops that I have encountered but this one beats the cake. I have been asked by UHP officers why am I here. Like I don’t belong in this area. I have been reprimanded by Summit County officers like I am some kid. I am a 48-year-old American citizen who served this country in the U.S. Army who just happens to be black, yet I am still being treated as if I am a criminal. This needs to stop and police should not be running a person’s plate number just because it seems as if one doesn’t fit the geographics.

Jeffrey Graham

Kamas


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