Nearly 20 Wisconsin State Patrol troopers are being criticized for not wearing name tags, or any type of ID number, when they were sent to North Dakota recently to help keep pipeline protesters in line.
The secrecy is intended to help protect the troopers, but civil rights groups aren’t happy about it. Molly Collins with the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin says law enforcement shouldn’t intimidate the public’s free speech rights by not wearing, or covering up, their name tags.
Collins calls it an implicit threat that police will carry out actions that don’t want to be held accountable for.
Wisconsin Professional Police Association’s Jim Palmer says officers typically do wear name badges or some type of identifying number. But he also says there should still be some way for the Patrol to effectively identify and investigate any matter involving the troopers.