The Nassau County Police disproportionately arrested people of color in the first half of this year, Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder told Nassau County's Public Safety Committee last week. Ryder said even though Black and Hispanic people make up 29% of Nassau County’s population, they make up 60% of the department's arrests.

Ryder said the reason for the imbalance is that people of color are traveling across county lines from the city, stealing merchandise from Long Island malls – and getting caught.

"Uniondale has the large Walmart and supermarket where we have a lot of arrests," Ryder said. "Valley Stream has the Green Acres Mall where again, these are our initiatives.”

Ryder told lawmakers that the Westbury and Roosevelt Field malls were also popular destinations.

However, the department’s data shows greater disparities that Ryder did not explain.

For example, Black people were disproportionately subjected to more field interviews. For Black and Hispanic people, 28% of these interviews led to searches as opposed to just 20% of white people.

Additionally, Black and Hispanic drivers were pulled over more than white drivers. When Black and Hispanic drivers were ticketed, they were given an average of three tickets per stop, whereas white drivers received two tickets per stop.

Police reform advocates said the police department is simply making an excuse for biased policing.

“We now have more data on Nassau County policing, and every way you cut it minority groups are being over policed,” said Jeremy Joseph, a member of advocacy group LI United to Transform Policing.

Ryder also revealed new information about officer misconduct.

He said nine officers were forced to resign, retire or were terminated this past year because of their behavior.

"That's the most done in the history of this department," Ryder said.

A police reform advocate speaks during a Nassau County legislative hearing updating its police department's progress on police reform.

Ryder also said the state attorney general’s office has begun reviewing several of Nassau’s internal affairs investigations. According to Ryder, the attorney general found that in two of the five internal affairs investigations so far completed, Ryder did not punish the officer’s misconduct sufficiently. Gothamist previously reported that out of 144 civilian complaints of false arrest and excessive force, Nassau police had not found that a single one was founded.

"If the AG doesn't like it, the AG overrides it and comes down with a stricter penalty," Ryder said.