PHOENIX — The city of Phoenix is demanding that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign stop using the image of Phoenix police officers in a campaign advertisement.
In a cease-and-desist letter sent Thursday, the city says the campaign violated federal and state law by using copyrighted material, including images of officers in uniform and at work, without permission. The ad in questions features images of uniformed officer greeting Trump and shaking his hand on an airport tarmac.
The ad has been airing for more than a week. The video used appears to be from Trump’s June 18 visit to Phoenix.
In the letter, City Attorney Brad Holm demands that the ad be removed from airwave.
“The officers depicted in the ad were in uniform precisely because they were on duty performing work for Phoenix at the time,” Holm wrote. “In this context, the ad unmistakably and wrongfully suggests that Phoenix and the officers support or endorse Mr. Trump’s campaign.”
Holm writes that the officers were unaware that they were photographed and videotaped and they did not consent to having their on-duty images in any campaign advertisement, Trump or otherwise.
Phoenix police uniforms, including the department’s badge and patch, are pieces of Phoenix intellectual property that would need permission to be used, according to the letter.
The letter states that while Phoenix is not endorsing Trump, it also isn’t endorsing Democrat Hillary Clinton, or any presidential candidate.
Arizona Trump Campaign Chairman State Rep. Phil Lovas, R-Peoria, says he cannot comment on the letter because he has not seen it.
Trump’s Arizona director, Brian Seitchik, declined to comment when reached Thursday evening.