NEW YORK (AP) - After more than a decade of complaints, the New York Police Department's practice of stopping and frisking people on the streets has suddenly moved to the forefront as a combustible political issue.
City Council members thundered at a hearing last week that the "stop and frisk" tactic is discriminatory and ineffective. Mayoral hopefuls have clamored to call for change. A politically powerful union has said it won't support a candidate who doesn't criticize stop and frisks. Officers conducted nearly 700,000 of them last year.
Many factors came together to move the issue from perennial gripe to hot topic in the last year. Among them: increased use of the tactic, public pressure and campaign politics.
So far, it's unclear what will come of the attention swirling around stop and frisk.
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