The Muslim Public Affairs Council announced on Friday that the LAPD’s anti-terrorism bureau has agreed to change the way it handles suspicious activity reports.
Council president Salam Al-Marayati said the LAPD has agreed to keep files only on activity that could be criminal or have “a nexus to terrorism.”
"These checks on the program are not in place now," Al-Marayati explained. "So if somebody is photographing a building as a tourist, they can easily be put in that system.”
Though LAPD officials did not immediately return a call for comment, Al-Marayati said department officials plan to issue new guidelines in the coming months that will include a means to determine whether officers racially profile when looking for terrorist activity.
“The model we are developing here in Los Angeles is a pioneering effort," he said. "I don’t see this kind of community engagement with law enforcement taking place anywhere in the country.”
Al-Marayati added that the LAPD stands in stark contrast to the New York Police Department, which was found to have been cooperating with the CIA in collecting information on the city’s Muslim communities.