City leaders in Grand Rapids are trying to find ways improve relations between police and the community. On Tuesday details on a new study were unveiled.
It will examine traffic stops and whether race plays a factor. Grand Rapids Police Chief David Rahinsky says he welcomes the study.
"One of the good things about the method being used is they have found police departments that are problematic and they are not afraid to call them out. They are tried and true and we have a lot of confidence in what the study will show," says Rahinsky.
An outside firm will analyze traffic stops at more than 20 intersections in Grand Rapids. They'll track the number of Hispanic, Black and White drivers stopped.
According to a 2014 national study from the Department of Justice, 13 percent of black drivers were stopped by police at least once per year compared to 10 percent for white drivers. When it comes to searches, the numbers are more alarming. A New York Times study found that black drivers in Chicago are five times more likely to be searched than white drivers.
The study will begin at the end of August and conclude by November. Results should be available by early next year.