The removal came following complaints from the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the American Civil Liberties Union that the stickers were unconstitutional.
“A Bible verse… is a sectarian and exclusively religious statement,” Sam Grover, staff attorney for the Freedom From Religion Foundation, told Cruz. “Under the Establishment Clause, the sheriff’s office, as a government entity, must remain neutral. It cannot promote one religion over another, or religion over non-religion.”
The decals say “Blessed are the peacemakers… Matthew 5:9,” and were donated to the department in March.
Sheriff Hank Partin decided to remove the decals. “Our intent was, and still is, to honor our fellow brothers and sisters in law enforcement,” Partin said in a written statement.
“We want to focus on those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice while serving their communities. The last thing that I want is for this to become a distraction to the men and women who serve their communities selflessly every day.”