In other Philly news, while the city council and the mayor were continuing their quest to make the city a sanctuary for as many criminals as possible, the City of Philadelphia set the ALL-TIME murder record.
The city of Philadelphia has set a record in 2021 with 559 murders committed, the most in its history since records began. It has outstripped more populous cities that have also seen rates spike, like New York and Los Angeles. The rate surged from last year’s 499 murders and represented a major increase from 2019’s 356 killings.
Oct 27 2020 – RIOTERS hurled garbage cans at police officers, while a cop car was set ablaze as riots, which left 30 officers injured, broke out across Philadelphia.
By CLAUDIA LAUER The Associated Press February 24, 2022 7:38 AM
The Philadelphia Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police filed a lawsuit seeking to invalidate a city law banning officers from pulling over drivers for low-level offenses, saying the law illegally preempts existing state laws on traffic violations.
The lawsuit, filed in Common Pleas Court on Tuesday by the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 and several of the union’s leaders as individual citizens of Philadelphia, also argues that the First Class City Home Rule Act prevents Philadelphia from creating a law counter to those already in place throughout the rest of the state.
The lawsuit asks for declaratory judgment but does not ask for an injunction that would stop the law from going into effect March 3. City officials had initially said enforcement would begin Thursday. The law will prohibit officers from pulling over vehicles solely for a handful of traffic offenses deemed “secondary violations,” such as improperly displayed registration or inspection stickers, and single broken taillights.
In a news release announcing the lawsuit Wednesday, Lodge leaders called the city law irresponsible, saying it would promote unsafe driving without consequences.
Philadelphia is the largest city government in the U.S. to pass a ban on what are sometimes called pretextual stops. Its Driving Equality Bill was passed by the City Council and later enacted through a mayoral executive order in November.
The lawsuit alleges the law “creates a new class of offenses that law enforcement officers are prohibited from enforcing—impermissibly amending legislation enacted by the General Assembly.” Advocates for law enforcement say such stops can uncover illegal drugs and weapons, noting that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1996 that they were acceptable.
“This is not the issue of reform that they are trying to paint it as. It really hurts the whole city,” said FOP Lodge 5 President John McNesby, who is listed in his individual and professional capacity as a plaintiff.