Petition Closed

It's time for the Justice Department to intervene in McHenry County, IL. If you're not Caucasian, you are 65% more likely to get stopped by the police there. Compare that to 15% in the rest of Illinois, and it's not hard to see the dangerous racial profiling taking place.

What's more, McHenry County Sheriff's deputies have been pulling over and arresting an inordinate amount of “whites” with names like Miguel Perez Reyes, Pablo Toxqui-Zavala and Pedro Lopez. It turns out these deputies in suburban Illinois have been trying to hide the arrest totals of Hispanics in their jurisdiction. They’re trying to cover up their obvious racial profiling practices.

A former McHenry County officer has even admitted that he and others were consistently encouraged to increase arrests and traffic stops in immigrant neighborhoods, assuming that Hispanics in those neighborhoods would be less likely to have driver's licenses or proper ID. Those found to be undocumented could then be detained under a federal program known as "Secure Communities, which infuses McHenry County with millions of dollars a year. We need to stop any program that provides economic incentives for racial profiling.
This kind of racial profiling is brazen - but it is also against the law.   As more and more statistics come to light, now is the time for a federal probe into the abuses of the McHenry County Sheriff's Department. Wrongdoing by the department must be exposed and justice must be restored.
Sign the Petition to the Justice Department to investigate the McHenry County Sheriff's Department immediately -- let's end this kind of dangeros racial profiling.
Your letter will be sent directly to the Department of Justice.

Letter to
US Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr.
McHenry County State's Attorney Louis A. Bianchi
McHenry County Sheriff Sheriff Keith Nygren
I write to you today to urge you to launch an official investigation into the outrageous racial profiling conducted by the McHenry County Sheriff's Department.

I was shocked to read about the various abuses undertaken by McHenry County deputies against Hispanic and immigrant residents. Officers in this suburban Illinois area have specifically singled out and targeted Hispanic communities and engaged in heinous acts of racial profiling. If you're Latino in McHenry, you're 65% more likely to get stopped by the police. This is outrageous.

McHenry County receives millions of dollars from the federal government to find and jail undocumented immigrants, increasing the incentive to target anyone who might pass for an immigrant or live in a neighborhood with a large immigrant population. This has led to deliberate acts of racial profiling that were then masked by mislabeling the race of those detained as "white." Not only is this deceptive, racial profiling is destructive: it damages trust with whole communities and makes it harder to fight crime. We need to stop any program that provides economic incentives for racial profiling.

Again, I urge you to launch an immediate investigation into the egregious racial profiling of Hispanic and immigrant residents in McHenry County.