The Violence of Nosy Questions

Boston University Law Review, Vol. 100, No. 935, 2020

Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper No. 426

16 Pages Posted: 13 Jan 2021

See all articles by Jeannine Bell

Jeannine Bell

Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Date Written: May 1, 2020

Abstract

This Essay examines a little-studied aspect of police procedure: police officers’ unfettered power to ask questions of motorists. The questions officers ask after they have stopped a car can run the gamut from questions about the nature of the motorist’s travel plans to nosy personal questions. Such questions are often intrusive, and drivers report feeling degraded by having to answer them. This Essay argues that these questions should be regulated because giving officers complete control over what they ask motorists provides a significant space for racial discrimination in policing, creates resentment, and encourages minorities to distrust the police.

Keywords: Discrimination, Policing, Law Enforcement, Police Procedure, Minorities

Suggested Citation

Bell, Jeannine, The Violence of Nosy Questions (May 1, 2020). Boston University Law Review, Vol. 100, No. 935, 2020, Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper No. 426, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3753171

Jeannine Bell (Contact Author)

Indiana University Maurer School of Law ( email )

211 S. Indiana Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States
812-856-5013 (Phone)
812-855-0555 (Fax)

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