NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York City politicians are calling for a federal probe of the NYPD’s “stop and frisk” strategy.

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and state Sen. Eric Adams said at a news conference Wednesday that federal prosecutors need to step in to protect the rights of minorities.

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“It’s fraught with racial profiling and we cannot wait any longer to reform it,” Stringer told 1010 WINS on Wednesday. “We have tried to engage the mayor and the police commissioner, we’re obviously not having success. The next step is to go to the federal government.”

The strategy resulted in street stops of more than 500,000 people last year. Civil rights advocates say most of them were young black men and Hispanic men who were innocent.

The NYPD claims the effort is essential for taking guns off the street and preventing crime in neighborhoods where men of color make up the vast majority of murder and shooting victims.

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“Many of us believe that ‘stop and frisk’ is an important tool to fighting crime, but we need to do it in a way that protects the constitutional and civil rights of individuals,” Stringer said.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Brooklyn declined comment.

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