- Associated Press - Thursday, September 10, 2015

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia has shipped out 1,600 Sons of Confederate Veterans license plates, minus an image of a Confederate flag that Gov. Terry McAuliffe deemed divisive.

A spokeswoman for the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles said Wednesday the freshly minted plates are similar to the old ones. They still feature three Confederate military leaders astride horses above the name of the Southern heritage group.

McAuliffe set the change in motion in June after a young white man was accused of killing nine African-Americans in a Charleston, South Carolina, church. Later, images appeared of the man posing with the Confederate flag.

DMV spokeswoman Brandy Brubaker said the new Sons of Confederate Veterans plates should be in place by Oct. 3. The next day, the old plates are no longer valid.

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