The Devine Police Department made 815 fewer traffic stops in 2018 than in 2017, according to the 2018 racial profiling report Lt. Chris Andrews presented at the Special Devine City Council meeting held last Tuesday, Feb. 12.
Devine officers made 1,728 traffic stops in 2018, down from 2,543 in 2017.
One thousand and two stops were made on men, and 726 on women. One thousand and fifty-nine of the stops were made for moving traffic violations, 662 for vehicle traffic violations (equipment, inspection, or registration), and seven for violations of other laws. Of those stopped, 1,058 were Hispanic, 641 Caucasian, 25 African, and four Asian. The race or ethnicity of those pulled over was not known prior to the stops.
Searches were conducted in 164 stops. Ninety-six of the searches were conducted based on probable cause or reasonable suspicion, while 35 were conducted after consent was given. Fifteen were inventory searches as a result of towing, 11 incident to arrest/warrant, and five because contraband or evidence was in plain sight.
Contraband was discovered in 129 of the searches. Of that, 103 was illegal drugs or paraphernalia, 22 alcohol, three other, and one currency.
Arrests were made in 140 of the stops, 103 of which were due to a violation of the Penal Code, 27 because of a violation of a traffic law, nine because of outstanding warrants, and one because of the violation of a City Ordinance. Written warnings or citations were given in 1,712 of the stops.
One thousand and forty-three stops occurred on City streets, 184 on a US Highway, and one on private property/other.
Law enforcement agencies are required to submit annual racial profiling reports to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE).
A motion by District 3 Councilman David Espinosa and District Five Councilman Cory Thompson to approve the report passed 3-0, with District 2 Councilman Steve Lopez also voting for the motion.
District 1 Councilman David Valdez and District 4 Councilwoman Jennifer Schott were absent.
By Marly Davis
Editor’s note: This article was edited on Feb. 28, 2019 to correct a mistake.