Princeton Prof Accuses Police Of Targeting Her Because She's Black

An African American studies professor living in Princeton says police reaction to an old parking violation far outweighed what a white person would face. Police dispute her account.

A Princeton University professor has taken to social media to protest her humiliating arrest by two police officers last week.

Iman Perry, who teaches African-American studies, claims she was discriminated against because of her race.

The arrest came during the morning of Feb. 6, when the professor was stopped for driving 67 mph in a 45 mph zone by a male and female officer. She was placed in the police vehicle, handcuffed to a workstation and jailed— and to add insult to the injury, she was frisked by the male officer, instead of the female one, like a wanted criminal.

 “There are a number of commentators online who have repeated to me an all-too-common formulation: ‘Well, if you hadn’t done anything wrong, this wouldn’t have happened,’ she wrote. “But this demand for behavioral perfection from black people in response to disproportionate policing and punishment is a terrible red herring.”

Although, Perry alleges she was held in custody for only a single parking ticket, Capt. Nicholas Sutter, the department chief said the officers learned that her driving privileges were suspended and a warrant had been issued for her arrest over two unpaid parking violations.

Sutter claims he has seen the dashcam footage of Perry’s arrest and there was nothing untoward in the way the male officer checked her. When asked whether the department policy required the female officer to check female suspects, Sutter said it would not be practical as the department only has eight women officers.

Regardless of the captain’s justification, the fact remains there is a lot of tension all over the country due to the way law enforcement officers have mistreated and even killed black citizens like Michael Brown in Ferguson and Laquan McDonald in Chicago.

Perry was released after paying $130 in overdue fines and was picked up soon after by an acquaintance and left. However, she pleaded in her social media post:

“I’m asking you to understand that my experience, and my feelings, are directly and intimately tied to that larger truth. We unquestionably, have a serious problem with policing in this society.”

Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Reuters

View Comments

Recommended For You