Family could face daily $500 fine for Zombie-themed Nativity

The scene has drawn criticism from some Christian groups in the area.Facebook

A zombie-themed Nativity scene in Ohio could cost a family $500 per day in fines after receiving complaints from local officials and religious groups.

Jason and Amanda Dixon first built the display on their front lawn in Cincinatti last year to promote a haunted house run by Mr Dixon, the New York Times reports. They decided to run it again this year, complete with an un-dead Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus.

However, it has drawn criticism from some Christian groups in the area. A letter was left in the nativity over the weekend that said "God frowns upon this manger scene".

"If you read the scriptures closely, the God of the Bible is not only a God of love, but also a God of wrath," the letter read.

"God never expresses even the slightest inkling of humour towards demons, or in this case, zombies."

The local authority has also warned that without the proper permit to hold the display, the Dixons could be faced with a daily $500 fine. They had applied for the permit, but were denied.

Mr Dixon previously said he would take down the Nativity, but has since decided to leave it up, and is fundraising to cover the expense of any possible fines.

Messages on the couple's Facebook page accuse officials of trying to "impose their theocracy" on the family and violate freedom of speech.

A note on the page also says: "We are not Atheist".

It is not the only Nativity scene causing controversy in the US this winter. A satanic temple is planning a "snaketivity" in Detroit, which has angered local Christians.