Four off-duty Minneapolis police officers working security at the WNBA Minnesota Lynx game at Target Center on Saturday night walked off the job after the players held a news conference denouncing racial profiling, then wore Black Lives Matter pregame warm-up jerseys, reports the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
Lynx players did not wear T-shirts supporting the Black Lives Matter movement ahead of Tuesday's game in San Antonio.
"The Lynx organization was made aware about the concerns of the off duty Minneapolis police officers," the team said in a statement. "While our players' message mourned the loss of life due to last week's shootings, we respect the right of those individual officers to express their own beliefs in their own way. ... We continue to urge a constructive discussion about the issues raised by these tragedies."
Lt. Bob Kroll, president of the Minneapolis Police Federation, the union that represents rank-and-file officers, praised the officers for quitting Saturday. "I commend them for it," he said.
Kroll said the four officers also removed themselves from a list of officers working future games. He did not know who the officers were. "Others said they heard about it and they were not going to work Lynx games," he said.
The three-time WNBA champions wore black T-shirts that read "Change starts with us, justice and accountability" and on the back had Philando Castile's and Alton Sterling's names along with "Black Lives Matter" and a Dallas Police Department emblem.