239 W Main St, Richmond, KY 40475 1 859 623 1000 Justice, Education, Industry

RPD Tattoo and Body Art Policy

Body art is defined as procedures used to alter the body’s appearance, such as branding, body piercing (other than the earlobe for earrings), scarification, or tattoos.

In order to present a positive and professional image to the community, body art on the hands, neck, face or any part of the head is prohibited. Members are prohibited from having visible body art, excluding tattoos, on any part of the body, while in uniform or while performing an official duty in non-uniformed attire, unless otherwise approved by the Chief of Police. This includes secondary employment in an official capacity.

Sleeve tattoos are likewise prohibited. A sleeve tattoo is a very large tattoo, or a collection of smaller tattoos, that covers, or almost covers, a member’s entire arm or leg. Half-sleeve or quarter-sleeve tattoos that are visible to the eye, while in uniform or while performing official duty in non-uniformed attire, are likewise prohibited. A half-sleeve or quarter-sleeve tattoo is defined as a very large tattoo, or a collection of smaller tattoos that covers, or almost covers, the entire portion of an arm or leg above or below the elbow or knee.

Tattoos that are sexist, racist, vulgar, anti-social, gang-related, extremist group-related or may bring discredit upon the Richmond Police Department are prohibited. Whether a tattoo’s content is deemed appropriate or inappropriate is at the discretion of the Chief of Police.

Prohibited body art will be concealed while on-duty, via one of the following methods:

  • Cover the body art with approved clothing/uniform (long shirt year around).
  • Cover the body art with a patch, elastic bandage or other material that is similar in color to the member’s skin tone.
  • Conceal the body art with a black or blue covering.
  • Have the body art removed at the member’s expense.