Chipley, Fla. -- A Chipley woman claims the Chipley Police Department is randomly targeting the African American community.
“It’s getting to the point where they are angry, it’s just that they are afraid to come forward and say anything, but they’ll come to me because I’m verbal, I speak what I believe in” said Dorothy Harper, Chipley resident.
Dorothy Harper says the Chipley Police Department is targeting black residents with intimidation on the roadways.
“You know who the cars belong to why pull out a gun and make ladies get out of their car and search their car, that doesn’t make any sense to me” said Harper.
Harper says most of the stops take place in predominantly black neighborhoods, raising hostilities between police and the black community. At Tuesday’s city council meeting Chipley’s police chief said it’s the first he’s heard of such allegations.
“Nobody’s called the office, including Miss Harper, of any concerns with racial profiling” said Kevin Crews, Chipley Police Chief.
According to Crews, Chipley police ticketed more white drivers than black drivers from January 1 to April 30. Despite the statistics provided by the Chipley police department, Harper remains skeptical.
“Most of the people here are afraid of dealing with police, they’re afraid of retaliation. There need to be changes made, we need to have a meeting of the minds and come together in this community” said Harper.
Both Crews and Harper say they would be open to a community meeting to try and work out any issues between the African American community and the Chipley Police Department.