Mississippi Accuses Movie Company of Slandering State Troopers
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A movie company filming in Mississippi is under fire from state officials for putting the “hard-earned reputation and image” of troopers on the line.
Commissioner of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety Sean Tindell sent a cease and desist letter Thursday to a production company filming “Paradise Highway” in the state, Y’all Politics reports.
Tindell states the film — produced by Claudia Bluemhuber/Silver Reel, directed by Anna Gutto, and featuring actors Morgan Freeman, Juliette Binoche, and Hala Finley — is allegedly using the insignia of the Mississippi Highway Patrol (MHP) according to photos on social media.
“The photographs shared on social media give rise to significant concern that your production may jeopardize or otherwise tarnish the hard-earned reputation and image of the MHP,” Tindell said.
“That uniform might not mean much to you, but it means a hell of a lot to us,” he added. “DPS will not risk jeopardizing the reputation of our Patrol or the morale of our Troopers for the sake of the silver screen.”
The DPS commissioner informed the company that depicting an officer is against state law, noting that upholding MHP’s image is for public respect and morale of the troopers “who earned their positions as Troopers through blood, sweat and tears, and who work tirelessly to keep the citizens and roads of Mississippi safe.”
He concluded: “Should you desire to depict MHP Troopers in your film, we would be happy to work with you to supply you with actual MHP Troopers, or possibly to otherwise ensure that the MHP is properly depicted.”