The official cover-up was ordered by San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne [...] Under the new rules, uniformed police must ensure that their dress blues hide any tattoos, brands or "scarifications" that are "excessive," or visible over more than 30 percent of their biceps, forearms or hands. The rules also outlaw most inked skin renderings above the officer's collarbone, at a time when body art has become big business across the country.
The crackdown came after members of the public complained of excessively decorated police at community meetings and also after a few emergency calls. Some victims of crime were taken aback by the sight of extensively tattooed patrolmen turning up to help them, the chief said. "We have had complaints from citizens who called and said they didn't believe that (the cops) were police officers," he said.
Cops order cover-up of officers' tattoos
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