By Maya Rhodan
October 15, 2015

The Fairfax County Virginia police union president urged citizens to boycott a pumpkin patch he believed posted a “Black Lives Matter” sign in a Facebook post.

Brad Carruthers, the President, Fairfax Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 77 believed the sign was posted at the Cox Family Farm in Fairfax County, but according to WUSA in Washington, the sign was posted at a nearby home. Carruthers said Wednesday he later removed the post because it had been “misrepresented” and elicited negative comments.

“The phrase ‘black lives matter,'” Carruthers wrote, “has unfortunately also been used more recently to incite violence against law enforcement officers, which is why it has negative connotations for us.”

Carruthers originally posted on the Fairfax FOP’s Facebook page that he was disturbed and disappointed by news that the had posted a sign that read “black lives matter.” The phrase has become a rallying cry for protesters calling for equal treatment of African Americans under the law. Some law enforcement officials, however, worry the saying encourages mistreatment and violence toward police officers.

“This is a time when law enforcement is the target for criticism for almost everything they do,” he wrote. “The presence of this sign at Cox’s Farm helps perpetuate this kind of behavior and judgement.”

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