A police department has removed a social media post recruiting new officers following several complaints regarding the ad's reference of a popular video game.

Police Chief Apologizes After Ad Is Removed

The Peoria Police Department posted an image on its Facebook account last week that featured three men wearing tactical gear and police uniforms. The officers' guns are drawn including one that is pointed directly at the camera.

"Stop playing games and answer the call of duty," the ad reads. The text is accompanied by two officers' contact information.

Call of Duty is a popular first-person shooter video game that has players take on the role of military members tasked with various missions that require gunning down their enemies. The font used for the ad looks similar to the Call of Duty logo used to promote the game.

Several commenters on the post called out the use of the video game reference in the post and how it was being used to appeal to a specific audience.

The Peoria Journal Star reported two days later that the police chief has apologized for the ad, which has since been removed. Peoria Police Chief Eric Echevarria told the newspaper he didn't intend to offend anyone.

"I take ownership of this, and I sincerely apologize," he said in his statement to the Journal Star.

Police Department May Have Been Concerned About Legal Action

The social media response to the Call of Duty recruitment ad may not have been the Peoria Police Department's only concern before its removal.

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A new report from video game website Kotaku says members of the department worried about being sued by Activision, the company that owns the Call of Duty franchise. The website cited an article from 404 Media that included emails allegedly sent by those discussing the ad campaign within the department.

"None of the emails share any concern over the gamification or glorification of police duty," Kotaku reported.

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