Saturday, September 27, 2014

DOJ tells Ferguson Police Chief: "Stop wearing Wilson Support Bracelets"

The U.S. Department of Justice has asked the Ferguson, Missouri police department to order its officers not to wear bracelets saying “I am Darren Wilson,” a reference to the white officer who killed black teenager Michael Brown. The shooting has led to weeks of protests, mainly in the St. Louis suburb.

Protesters had uploaded photos of police officers wearing bracelets expressing their support for Wilson, who a grand jury is currently decideing whether or not to charge over the killing. The letter from the U.S. justice department was sent to the Ferguson police chief Tom Jackson, who had recently given an interview apologizing for the conduct of Ferguson Police in recent months. Earlier this week, the Justice Department had also reportedly said its investigators had found that Ferguson police officers were not wearing name tags, a violation of the department’s rules.

The letter said, according to Reuters, that the bracelets "upset and agitated" people and "reinforce the very 'us versus them' mentality that many residents of Ferguson believe exists."

In the letter sent earlier this week, the Justice Department said: "The failure to wear name plates conveys a message to community members that, through anonymity, officers may seek to act with impunity," Reuters reported. The Justice Department investigation into the shooting and the treatment of protesters by police is still ongoing. source:IBTTimes

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