tv America Tonight Al Jazeera October 28, 2015 12:30am-1:01am EDT
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>> police are not aggressive. they are afraid of being arrested. if they make a mistake, they are afraid they'll be charged. adam may on the city facing sharp spikes in the murder rates and what might be behind it. . joie chen. we saw the flare of anger and tensions between the communities of colour and police sworn to protect them. into that divide the president takes a bold step, spoking to a national gathering of police chiefs. the first time a president did that. saying officers are unfairly scapegoating and pushing for criminal justice reform. against a backdrop, six months after the baltimore riots. adam may turned to the streets for answers. >> baltimore is a city struggling to find its foolting. >> six months after riots
decimated parts of the city. protesters demanded police reforms as six officers go on gray. >> a great city of america lost control of its streets. ed was a decorated police officer, who went on to lead the baltimore police democrat from 2000 to 2002. he was convicted of misusing city funds. he's a local radio host. >> three days after the bleesh was let off, how long did it take to quell the riot. >> one night. television. >> yes. >> reporter: what went through your mind? >> my role would be the first rock thrown would be the last one, you don't let it by. you don't let the police officers be pelted with concrete and allow teenagers to loot
stores, burning livelihoods. >> reporter: after the riots the dangerous streets of baltimore was worse. 275 murders in 2015, more than new york, with 13 times the population of baltimore. >> i see horrible murders, and you wonder how people can do this. retired police lieutenant stephen tabling was a top investigator. and we spoke to him after the riots, when the spike was starting to break records. >> what do you think is happening in this space. >> what i think is happening is i think police are not aggressive they are afraid of being roasted. if they make a mistake. they are afraid they'll be charged. what is the word on the street? >> get my time and get out.
>> in my 32 years. i've never been associated with police officers would get up in the morning, get out and risk their lives. and let me see whose rights i can violate. >> reporter: this person represents an accused officer in freddie gray's death. he can't discuss the details but speaks to "america tonight". police. >> i don't think spheres get enough credit for what they do. and in this city they bury 100 officers in the line of duty. we see officers working for little money under adverse assistance with not thanks. >> reporter: a new poll finds one in four african-americans believe it's equal treatment by police. some blame nears of an aggressive style known as zero
tolerance, in the 2000s arrests skyrocketed as police conducte random stop and frisk searches. >> there's a fine mine between aggressive policing that is proactive. and on the flipside if the policing is too aggressive, it breaks down the trust in police. also a line between being aggressive. it can harm no one, stop and frisk, if done properly, as long as the officer doesn't go up to corners patting people down. >> coupled with stop and frisk. baltimore accused compstat. a tool that critics say encouraged officers to over-arrest people so they this good numbers. >> looking at any police department. it's a numbers game.
>> norris oversaw implementation of the programme. hoping, he says, to save lives. >> when i moved here, i said this publicly, i got here with 320 murders. i got it down to under 300. it was under 250s. that, still, is 10 times the national average at the time. >> the program was misused by his successors. due to commissioners that took zero tolerance policing too far. >> we targeted minor crimes with a bunch of people drinking or smoking pots. post that, after i left, they were enforcing the minor laws, not with an eye towards solving crimes several administrations ago, but it created animosity. >> chief delegate joe carter is a former mayoral candidate and visit.
>> reporter: what is the root cause of anger and distrust that people have towards city hall. >> it's based on reality, being treated at if they are not humans, there's a boiling point that has to come. we have reached it. carter argued class and racial segregation. living in poverty, turning to the drug trade. the children here, young people, they know they are not wanted in downtown baltimore, it's a city for city hall, and frankly tourism and middle class black and white people. that's the way they feel. if you are poor and black in baltimore, you don't feel that, you are a troublesome presence. >> a city divided by wealth and poverty, race and neighbourhood. opportunity and despair. with police on the front lines.
>> "america tonight"'s adam may joins us, this seems to have heated up the conversation, about the president's push for criminal justice reform and the conversation about police role in the communities. >> it has heated up during a conference of police chiefs, and you are seeing that there's a divide in opinions. the federal bureau of investigation director just the other day - he said that the protests in places like baltimore and ferguson, and the rests of some officers has had almost a chilling effect on police dints, with some fearful of getting out there. on the other hand. the white house was quick to denounce the comments. today you had the president walking a fine line on this issue, praising police officers, saying the evening news does not recognise a lot of work they do, but talking about some of the problems that persist when it comes to race relations in some of the communities. >> i know you have been
talking to a lot of street-level officers, talk to us about the stress they are under now. >> you know, we were smoked to find out in our romping on this issue, that we heard from police officers talking about the stress they are under. i had an officer ask me to give him a ride down it street. and he started to cry. talking about the stress of his job. we dug deeper and are working on a report in a couple of weeks on ttsd among police officers, and the stunning statistic, one study recently done found 100,000 acts if duty police officers in this country with p.t.s.d. related to things that happened to them on the job. one person we spoke to called them the walking wounded. they are officers that have problems. butt out there on the streets, and you have to wonder what effect does that have on the effectiveness for them to do
their jobs. >> as we heard, the president is in his campaign of sorts. not only speaking of the question of what the officer's role is in the community, but seeking support to get criminal justice reform moved through. >> he has the support of police officers. the police chief of baltimore, very supportive of some measures that the police did talk about. you talk to the police officers, and a lot of them i spoke to feels like the president hasn't had their back on issues faced. >> "america tonight"s adam may for us. >> cutting ties. "america tonight"s sara hoy, a follow up report on a practice some say doubles trouble for minor crime. and raising the rejects on residents that can least afford it. are new landlords praying on the poor. hot on the website. learning lessons. what desperate school districts
our fast-forward look at doubling trouble, a controversial method used to collect fines. traffic tickets turned over to for-profit companies to collect. the upshot was that those who could afford to pay got to walk away. those that couldn't found themselves in more trouble. >> reporter: elvis's troubles began in 2006.
he was stopped for a broken tail light and ticketed for not having a valid driver's licence. probation. >> i was on probation for $325. >> reporter: he was told to report to this correctional services, j.c.s. they collect fines for violations like drunk-driving speeding or driving without a licence. it charges the offenders a fee of $35 a month on top of their original fines. >> it was digging a hole deeper and deeper. >> he found himself downing in debt thanks to j.c.s. the cop found old fines that he owed from past offenses dating back from the '90s, disorderly arrest. >> i was a
heavy drinker much >> reporter: now sober, married and church going, he was making regular payments to the city. j.c.s. added the fines from the past, which the company blamed was almost $9,000. >> is it illegal to do that? >> yes, it is. >> reporter: the man's attorney filed a class action lawsuit against j.c.s. for praying on the poor. >> they pretend they are a probation service. they are not trained as probation officers. what it provides to the city is a collection service. >> fast-forward to a break up. the company that had been described a legally sanctions distortion racket lost dozens of towns as clients and has decided to end operations in the state. j.c.s. is at work in georgia and florida. next - priced out - the new rel
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♪ stepping up its fight against isil, the u.s. considers more airstrikes in syria and embedding troops in iraq. >> hello there. you are watchingays. from headquarters in doha. coming up: iran could be invited take part in talks on how to end the conflict in s syria. rescue and recovery in south asia after a major earthquake. the death toll rises plus . >> i am harry fawcett reporting from the emptying porian dam. people are worked about not jus