Citing a sizable increase in motorcycle registrations across the country in recent years, ridership increasingly including women and older Americans, the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan resolution condemning motorcycle profiling by law enforcement. Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorneys know many arrests in South Florida begin with traffic stops, and it’s important to confront outdated stereotypes of motorcyclists as scofflaws and gang members.
Nothing about Senate Res. 154 creates any hard-and-fast laws pertaining to motorcycle riders or motorcycle profiling. However, what it does is urge law enforcement agencies to reconsider their policies with regard to traffic stops involving motorcyclists and adopt training and directives to put a stop to discriminatory practices by patrol officers. Basically, the resolution indicates that people traveling on motorcycles should be treated the same as any other motorist moving through traffic. As reported by The Drive, a recent survey of motorcyclists said that at some point in the last two decades, they felt they had been targeted and profiled by law enforcement at least once for riding a motorcycle.
The VP of Government Relations for the American Motorcyclist Association lauded the resolution as bringing us one step closer to halting the practice of motorcycle profiling. Lawmakers noted that passing a law banning motorcycle profiling would likely be difficult, though they did in 2015 pass a measure that prohibited any federal dollars for the purpose of motorcycle-only checkpoints.