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Government & Politics

ACLU of Ohio Says Cuyahoga Falls Mayor's Court Shows Evidence of Racial Bias

photo of ACLU Cuyahoga Falls Mayor's Court
ACLU OF OHIO
The city's mayor Don Walters disputes the claim of racial bias and questions the accuracy of the data.

For years, residents have accused Ohio Mayor’s Courts, which hear traffic, city ordinance and misdemeanor cases, of being more interested in collecting revenue than serving justice.

In a new report, the ACLU of Ohio said some of those courts, including one in Cuyahoga Falls, show evidence of racial bias.

Policy researcher Sri Thakkilapati said Cuyahoga Falls Mayor's Court shows some issues.

“(The city's population is) 3.3 percent black, but 17 percent of the citations that were issued were to black folks,” she said. “There was (also) a lot of clustering in the poorer side of town, in the southeast side of Cuyahoga Falls.”

Meanwhile, Cuyahoga Falls mayor Don Walters disputes the claim of racial bias and questions the accuracy of the data.

He also added the city's Mayor’s Court is irrelevant to the actions of police officers. He said they would still issue citations and cases would be sent to municipal courts instead.