This Philly Cop’s Alleged Nazi Tattoo Has Sparked an Internal Police Investigation

(JTA) — The Philadelphia Police Department launched an internal investigation of one of its officers after a photo circulated online of the officer sporting a tattoo resembling a symbol used by the Nazis.

The image of Officer Ian Hans Lichtermann was posted to Facebook by Evan Parish Matthews, who said he took the photograph at a Black Lives Matter rally in Philadelphia during the Democratic National Convention on July 26. Lichtermann appears to have a tattoo of a parteiadler, or the Nazi eagle symbol, underneath the word “Fatherland” — a term the Nazi Party used to describe Germany.

“I find it offensive, and I know many others do as well,” Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement Thursday, when the investigation was announced. “This image is particularly offensive to our WWII veterans who fought valiantly to free Europe from Nazi Germany, as well as all victims of Nazi atrocities.”

The Philadelphia Police Department said it does not have a policy on officers’ tattoos but it is discussing whether to create one.

As of Friday, Instagram and Flickr accounts purportedly run by Lichtermann had been deleted, Philadelphia Magazine reported.

The images created a stir on social media.


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

This Philly Cop’s Alleged Nazi Tattoo Has Sparked an Internal Police Investigation

Thank you!

This article has been sent!