LAS VEGAS - A viewer wants to know if replicas of police vehicles with private plates are legal.
Private plates would only be used by an undercover officer, not a marked patrol car.
While it is illegal to impersonate a police officer, it is legal to have a car that looks like a police car. When police vehicles hit retirement age, many are sold at auction. Emergency gear, decals, emblems, light bars and identification marks are removed. Occasionally, spot lights and remnants of stickers remain.
These vehicles would only become illegal if they were re-equipped with emergency equipment or were being used to impersonate a police vehicle. You can't act in a manner that would make a motorist believe you're a police officer. Paint alone, however, does not constitute an impersonation.
Even if somebody paints there car to look like a squad car, the paint scheme is not copyrighted or protected. It must reach the level of impersonation to break the law.
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