Indianapolis Can't Prove Hip-Hop Ban

By The Associated Press
May 14 2003

INDIANAPOLIS - A task force has found no evidence that some nightclubs in a north-side neighborhood discriminate against blacks by agreeing to limit when rap music can be played.

However, "it is clear that there is a perception that minorities are not welcome in Broad Ripple," said Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee member Mike Carter.

Carter spoke at a community forum that about 40 people attended last week. Several said they believed they'd experienced discrimination in the neighborhood, The Indianapolis Star reported Friday.

Mayor Bart Peterson had asked the Progress Committee in March to investigate claims some bar owners in the well-known nightclub district made a pact to avoid hip-hop parties on weekends.

Peterson asked the committee, a civic group formed in the 1960s to promote unity and community growth, to determine if there was a ban and whether it promoted racial segregation.

The same group examined police-community relations at Peterson's request following complaints at Indiana Black Expo last July.

Carter said the group still was examining racial issues in Broad Ripple.

Deputy Police Chief William Reardon has said that bar owners agreed in late 2001 to avoid playing so-called "gangsta rap" as a way to prevent crime, the newspaper reported.

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