'Disgraceful': DC Officer Accused of Wearing Racist Shirt on Duty - NBC4 Washington

'Disgraceful': DC Officer Accused of Wearing Racist Shirt on Duty

The group Law4BlackLives says the shirt had a symbol used by the KKK

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    'Disgraceful': DC Officer Accused of Wearing Racist Shirt on Duty

    The Metropolitan Police Department is investigating reports that a police officer wore a T-shirt with a racist symbol on it while he was on duty.

    "This is disgraceful and does not represent the hard working and committed officers of the Seventh District," Police Chief Peter Newsham said in a tweet Friday afternoon.


    The group Law4BlackLives -- which is made up of lawyers who support the Black Lives Matter movement -- says it has filed complaints with the police department after they say an officer wore the T-shirt in D.C. Superior Court and in the community.

    The T-shirt shown in a photo from the group says "Powershift Seventh District." A Celtic cross stands in the place of the letter O. The symbol is used by white supremacist groups including the Ku Klux Klan, according to the Anti-Defamation League.

    The shirt shows a skeleton holding a rifle and the MPD shield, with the D.C. flag as a backdrop. Below the image is the words "Let me see that waistband jo."

    Law4BlackLives says the words are a reference to "jump outs" and searches of men of color for weapons.

    "This shirt is offensive and indicates systemic bias in the policing of people of color," the group said in a statement. "White supremacy and insinuated threats of death should never be associated with or tolerated in police departments who are sworn to protect and serve."

    The Seventh District covers much of Southeast D.C. east of the Anacostia River, including the communities of Anacostia and Barry Farm.

    The police department said it is investigating, and the officer has been placed in a "non-contact status," pending the outcome of the investigation.

    "We understand the trust of the community is critical to our ongoing work and take seriously any incidents that may undermine the confidence the community has in our members," MPD said in a statement.

    As of 3:30 p.m., an online petition calling for MPD to fire the officer had 1,115 signatures.