Wax figure of Francis causes confusion in NYC

In this photo provided by Hillary Karsten, a wax likeness of Pope Francis is driven through the streets of New York City, Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015 as Pope Francis himself was heading toward St. Patrick’s Cathedral to give an evening prayer service. The likeness itself can be seen at Madame Tassaud’s in New York City. (Courtesy of Hillary Karsten via AP)

NEW YORK (AP) — A publicity stunt featuring a life-size wax figure of Pope Francis appearing to wave from the back of a convertible caused some confusion before the real pontiff showed up in New York City.

Officials at Madame Tussauds New York debuted their wax pope Thursday, showing the white-robed figure off around Manhattan in a popemobile-like car hours before Francis’ plane arrived.

But spokeswoman Hillary Karsten says a surprised onlooker called police after mistakenly believing the figure was actually the pope.

Karsten said police officials contacted Madame Tussauds to make sure their pope was in fact wax. The New York Police Department didn’t immediately return a message seeking details about the mix-up.

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