Phoenix police hire law firm to investigate MAGA challenge coin

Share and speak up for justice, law & order…

Phoenix, AZ —A challenge coin created by the Phoenix Police Tactical Response Unit is causing quite the stir. It even triggered Civil Rights Attorney Benjamin Crump–who cannot seem to resist turning everything into a sign, symbol, or signal of something that fits his extraordinary opinions– said the coins were “emblematic of a cultural crisis” within law enforcement. (Although perhaps this has more to do with satirical coping mechanisms that most people outside of law enforcement will likely never understand.)

The coin was uncovered by ABC15 and reportedly commemorate the unit’s response to a protest following a speech from President Trump on August 22, 2017. The challenge coin depicts a suspect being shot, on one side of the coin, and the date of the protest on the other.

The coins also have the following phrases:


Following President Donald Trump’s visit to the Phoenix Convention Center, things outside got tense. Phoenix Police shot pepper balls at the feet of a crowd, while some people threw objects and gas canisters back at the officers. During the chaos, the shooting of Joshua Cobin became the iconic and lasting memory of the night.

Video captured by Phoenix station KTVK shows Cobin kicking a gas canister away toward the police line. Seconds later, he was shot in the groin with with a peeper ball–a less lethal option typically used for crowd control.

Cobin was charged with aggravated assault against police and other charges. He identified himself as an employee of GoDaddy according to the website OccidentDissent. And while identifying himself on Reddit, posting under the username “gotyourqueen,” Cobin said that “the pepper ball shot missed Major Johnson by 3 inches north so all I have is some bruising in the groin area.”

Glad to see Cobin kept his dignity and sense of humor, which desperately seem to be lacking these days.

According to ABC15, the coins were shared by the Phoenix Police Tactical Response Unit.

Meanwhile, the Phoenix Police Department faces an ongoing class-action lawsuit filed by the ACLU Arizona–and they didn’t hesitate to talk about the coins.

“On August 22, 2017, [Phoenix police] eviscerated the First and Fourth Amendment rights of hundreds of peaceful protesters when it grossly overreacted to a small group, who appeared to be moving a fence toward a fully armed phalanx of PPD officers standing at the ready,” according to a court motion filed by attorneys against the city.

“They relish in the use of violence against these protesters,” said Jared Keenan, an attorney with ACLU Arizona. “It sends a clear message that this is the appropriate way to act. It’s okay not only to use extreme violence against protesters, but to glorify it and relish in it.”

Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams was made aware of the coins, but no officers were disciplined, records show.

As part of the ongoing class-action lawsuit against the department for their protest response in 2017, Chief Jeri Williams and several members of the special unit were deposed. Williams’ deposition took place in August 2019.

The chief was asked several questions about the coin and whether it would be appropriate for her officers to create or have an image like that.

Williams said, “No.”

But apparently no officers were investigated or disciplined related to the coin, according to an email sent to attorneys seeking records in 2020. In response to a request for any documents and actions related to the coin, Phoenix police responded by saying there are none.

“There are no records because the coin was not a department sponsored, or funded, coin,” according to the city’s response. Last week, the City of Phoenix announced they hired an outside law firm to investigate the “challenge coin.”

Law Officer

Law Officer

Law Officer is the only major law enforcement publication and website owned and operated by law enforcement. This unique facet makes Law Officer much more than just a publishing company but is a true advocate for the profession.

Share and speak up for justice, law & order…

Read More

Post a comment and join the dialogue
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Content Not Found