A woman wearing a "FUCK BORIS" T-shirt was stopped in central London by police this week.
In a video, uploaded to YouTube today, the unnamed woman says she was walking back from the Black Lives Matter protest that took place in London on Wednesday when she was stopped by police because of the message on her T-shirt.
The woman begins to film the incident, which shows a police officer on camera explaining to her that her clothing violates the "Section 5 Public Order Act".
"Why would that cause harassment," the woman asks. "To who?"
The Section 5 Public Order Act states that "A person is guilty of an offence if he – (a) uses threatening words or behaviour, or disorderly behaviour, or (b) displays any writing, sign or other visible representation which is threatening." It is not an offence if they "had no reason to believe that there was any person within hearing or sight who was likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress".
The video goes on to show the police officer clarifying which law the woman is allegedly violating. She explains that their intervention is "invading [her] political right and democratic right to wear whatever [she] want[s]". A second police officer asks the woman if she is refusing to cover her shirt. The video then cuts off.
Text then appears on the video claiming that the woman was told to zip her jacket up to avoid further action, and that the police officer implied that she would be arrested if she refused.
VICE reached out to the British Transport Police for a comment. A spokesperson told VICE: "We are aware of a video on social media of one of our officers near Oxford Circus Underground station yesterday (Wednesday 3 June). Our officer approached the individual in a courteous and professional manner and legitimately challenged them for wearing an item of clothing that contains an obscene word that could cause alarm or distress.”
UPDATE 04/06/20: An earlier version of this article wrongly identified the officers as Met Police officers. This has now been corrected.
UPDATE 05/06/20: This article was updated to include a comment from the British Transport Police.