MILWAUKEE — A “Defund the Police” mural outside Milwaukee’s City Hall was painted over by an anonymous “editor” in an effort to show support for law enforcement.
The banner was painted Wednesday to promote the radical movement to undermine public safety by removing budgeted monies from police. It was later tampered with to spell out “Defend the Police,” with the “D” painted blue, the first “E” covered, and the “U” changed to an “E,” Urban Milwaukee reported.
Around 30 activists painted the original mural without permits or permission from the city. On Friday, WITI-TV spotted a paint job to fix the mural underway.
The change to the original phrase came after former Alderman Robert Donovan criticized the mural via social media Wednesday night, FOX reported.
“Fixed it for you, folks!” he wrote, accompanied by a photo showing the original phrase crossed out with a blue line.
Donovan advocated for increasing funding for the city’s police department and protecting officers during his 20 years on Milwaukee’s Common Council, according to Urban Milwaukee.
“People keep asking us, what does defund mean? It doesn’t mean abolish,” said Jeremy Wilbur, leader of the group that painted the “Defund the Police” mural, in a Facebook Live video.
The “Defund the Police” movement caught on following the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis police custody and the subsequent nationwide protests against police brutality and racial injustice.
“Let’s make this clear for them,” Wilbur said. “We don’t hate cops.”
The edited version was short lived as the message was returned to its original form on Friday, according to media reports.