Molly Hennessy-Fisk, THE LOS ANGELES TIMES
(The L.A. Times)—Federal officials intervened Friday to stop police in Ferguson, Mo., from wearing “I am Darren Wilson” bracelets in solidarity with the police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black 18-year-old there last month.
Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson agreed to bar his officers from wearing the bracelets while in uniform and on duty, and to ensure that other local police agencies did too, according to a letter released Friday by Christy Lopez, deputy chief of the special litigation section of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
He did so after Justice Department officials brought the issue to his attention, alerted by residents during community meetings earlier in the week who complained they had seen officers wearing the bracelets on patrol during protests Tuesday, according to the letter.
“These bracelets reinforce the very ‘us versus them’ mentality that many residents of Ferguson believe exists,” Lopez wrote.