Posted on July 18, 2019

Pittsburgh’s Black Population Accounts for Majority of Arrests, Report Says

Megan Guza, Tribune-Review, July 16, 2019

An annual report from Pittsburgh police shows a continuing racial disparity among the people they arrest, pull over and frisk.


A consent decree in 1997 required that officers undergo cultural diversity training and begin tracking traffic stops in an effort to promote more equitable policing. The decree was an agreement between the city and the federal government and a way to avoid civil litigation related to allegations of civil rights violations.

Pittsburgh’s black population has ranged between 23% and 27% for at least two decades, according to data from the U.S. Census. The city is about two-thirds white.


In 2017, African-Americans made up 54.69% of all arrests, a percentage more than double their population in Pittsburgh. The bureau’s 2016 report did not offer exact numbers for that year, but in 2015 black individuals made up 54% of all arrests.