(CNN) When Laura Coates’ husband brought a dash camera home a few years ago, she rolled her eyes. There he goes buying yet another gadget, she remembers thinking.
Then he took her hand and told her it was for her — so she’d know what happened if he were ever pulled over by a police officer, Coates, a CNN legal analyst who lives in Washington, DC, said on Twitter this week.
Go to the website of the American Civil Liberties Union and other advocacy groups and you’ll find a list of motorists’ rights and how to stay safe during a traffic stop: Be courteous. Stay calm. You don’t have to consent to a search. Keep your hands where the police can see them.
But for Coates and other African Americans mindful of Sunday’s fatal police shooting of Daunte Wright in Minnesota, the reality goes beyond that. A 2019 study of nearly 100 million traffic stops nationwide concluded that Black drivers are 20% more likely to get pulled over than White drivers.