The Department of Justice has urged cops in Ferguson, Missouri, to stop wearing wristbands showcasing their support for Darren Wilson.
Authorities in the area immediately threw their support behind Darren after he shot 17-year-old Michael Brown dead in the street early last month. In the days following the fatal incident, colleagues like Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson insisted that he was a good cop and a good man.
Many citizens of Ferguson would beg to differ, but their feelings did nothing to sway the FPD’s stance that Darren did the best he could in the altercation with Michael. They even began to wear “I Am Darren Wilson” wristbands to show their solidarity with the disgraced officer.
The DOJ opposed their apparel in a letter written to Thomas by Civil Rights Division official, Christy Lopez stating, “These bracelets reinforce the very ‘us versus them’ mentality that many residents of Ferguson believe exists.”
While she acknowledged that freedom of expression is very important, she’s concerned that “the message that many officers intend to convey by wearing these bracelets may be different than the message received by many of those who see these bracelets.”
Cops in Ferguson and the surrounding areas have agreed to stop wearing the wristbands on duty, but they’ll still be free to wear them in their free time. That wasn’t the only complaint about police uniforms, though. According to USA Today, the DOJ dictated that Thomas had to order his officers to adhere to the policy that they must all wear their nameplates while on duty.
One would think that this shouldn’t be an issue, but resident and federal investigators alike have caught some cops trying to conceal their identity by removing or covering up their name plates.