If you’re on the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) and have a crime committed against you, good luck getting the surveillance footage.
San Francisco authorities are refusing to release footage of crimes committed on the transit service by ‘minority youths’ because they’re concerned it would perpetuate ‘racial bias and stereotyping.’
During the span of three months, groups of teenagers have performed robberies at the San Fran station.
According to reports from KPXI-TV, one such attack – on April 22 – was committed by some 40-60 teens.
“I think people are genuinely concerned — they are fearful about the stories that have come out about the recent attacks, the assaults, the thefts,” said member of the BART board of directors, Debora Allen.
Allen pressed authorities for the reasoning behind withholding the footage from the public, to which she was eventually told the videos “would create a racial bias in the riders against minorities on the trains.”
Here you see Allen’s inquiring email: “I don’t understand what role the color of one’s skin plays in this issue [of whether to divulge information]. Can you explain?”
“If we were to regularly feed the news media video of crimes on our system that involve minority suspects, particularly when they are minors, we would certainly face questions as to why we were sensationalizing relatively minor crimes and perpetuating false stereotypes in the process,” responded BART Assistant General Manager Kerry Hamill.
According to the Daily Wire: Hamill added that she personally feels the media’s “real interest” in the videos being released to the public is “in pursuit of ratings.”
“They know that video of these events will drive clicks to their websites and viewers to their programs because people are motivated by fear,” she wrote.
Taylor Huckaby, a spokesman for BART, suggested that since the faces of the teens who are under 18 would have to be blurred, the video would be pointless.
At least one of the suspects is 19 years of age, Allen claims.
“What is the priority of BART?” asked Allen in an interview with KPIX-TV. “Is the safety of the passenger — of all passengers — is that a lesser priority than the race bias issue?”