ACLU Accuses Beck of Racial Profiling

Greg Sowinski, Lima News (Ohio), Oct. 26

LIMA—After the head of the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio accused Sheriff Dan Beck of racial profiling Tuesday, he fired back saying she had no evidence of such actions.

“It’s interesting that a group of attorneys that are supposed to represent civil liberties make serious accusations without the first thread of truth. There’s no complaints. They’re on a witch hunt,” he said.

Chris Link, the executive director for the ACLU of Ohio, sent out a written statement Tuesday titled “ACLU calls for Beck to end race-based profiling.” When asked if she had proof of race-based profiling, Link said she did not but said she worries there is something to all the concerns about which she has heard and read.

Beck said she has nothing and cannot find anything to show his deputies have profiled anyone based on race. Beck said the bigger issue is that Link and her agency are trying to put pressure on police agencies that address the illegal immigration issue.

“She is trying to justify her existence and the existence of the American Civil liberties Union,” he said.

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Link criticized Beck for concentrating too much on the illegal immigration issue while there are other issues she said he needs to address.

“By doing that, he is essentially turning his back on another criminal element just because they are white and that is poor police work,” she said.

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LIMA | The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio has called on a county sheriff to stop practices that it says constitute racial profiling of Mexican residents.

The ACLU said in a statement Tuesday that Allen County sheriff’s deputies began using profiling in August to conduct traffic stops to ask for citizenship papers.

Sheriff Dan Beck denied the accusations of profiling, saying the ACLU has no evidence.

Beck has said he’s concerned about a growing population of illegal immigrants in the community 70 miles southwest of Toledo and fears it could bring an increase in violent crime.

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Beck has said he’s concerned about a growing population of illegal immigrants in the community 70 miles southwest of Toledo and fears it could bring an increase in violent crime.

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The Mexican consul in Detroit, Antonio Meza, sent a letter to Beck last month after the sheriff announced a plan to train his deputies to recognize fraudulent forms of identification.

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Beck said those agencies are failing to perform their duties and, as sheriff, his job is to uphold all laws, including those pertaining to immigration.

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