Alan Burks and Jackie Hlastan filed a lawsuit today against dating websites True.com and Plenty of Fish for unauthorized use of their son’s likeness. Lt. Peter Burks, a 1999 Trinity Christian Academy graduate, was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2007.
According to the filing, after Peter’s death his photo appeared alongside advertisements proclaiming “Military man searching for love,” and “Soldiers WANT YOU!” Burks and Hlastan claim this “unauthorized” and “fraudulent” use was an attempt to exploit their son’s “good looks and strong jaw image” for financial gain. The image in question of Peter, 26, who was engaged at the time of his death, was widely circulated in the media and appears legitimately on UnsungHeroFund.org.
Burks and Hlastan are seeking exemplary damges for “willful and malicious” wrongs and have requested a jury trial.
“I just want these companies to admit what they did is wrong and to stop doing it,” Burks said in a statement through his attorney Rogge Dunn. “If I receive any money as a result of this lawsuit, I’ll use it to support Peter’s comrades-in-arms who are still fighting and dying for their country.”
To see the filing, go to the jump.