Eric Holder Announces Justice Department Plan to Target Racial Profiling

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In the wake of clashes at protests in Ferguson, Missouri, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says new Justice Department guidance will aim to end racial profiling and ensure fair and effective policing.

Holder said in a speech Monday at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta — where the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a pastor — that he will unveil details of the plan soon.

"In the coming days, I will announce updated Justice Department guidance regarding profiling by federal law enforcement. This will institute rigorous new standards — and robust safeguards — to help end racial profiling, once and for all," Holder said. "This new guidance will codify our commitment to the very highest standards of fair and effective policing."

The president instructed Holder to hold regional meetings on building trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve after the conflicts in Ferguson. Monday's meeting in Atlanta was the first.

Tensions between police and the community in Ferguson boiled over after a white police officer shot an unarmed black teenager in August. Protests turned violent again last week, after a grand jury declined to indict officer Darren Wilson in Michael Brown's death.

During Holder's speech, he was interrupted by about a dozen or so protesters holding signs and chanting "No justice, no peace." Holder let them continue for about two minutes before they were escorted out by security, but then later said, "Let me make one thing clear, I ain't mad at cha," referencing the song by the late rapper Tupac.

"It is through that level of involvement, that level of concern, and I hope a level of perseverance and commitment, that change ultimately will come," Holder said of the protesters.


— The Associated Press with Hasani Gittens