Impersonating a police officer is illegal, but police admit it's also easy. And, it appears someone is doing just that here in Fort Wayne. Nicole Pence reports.
A disturbing encounter took place this past Saturday--luckily the young woman pulled over by the "wannabe" cop wasn't hurt. But, the Fort Wayne Police Department warns there may be someone out there targeting women, and they're working hard to catch him.
Scott Tegtmeyer/FWPD: " Being a police officer, I myself, I can only assume the worst may have happen."
Vickie/Daughter-in-Law Pulled Over by Fake Cop: "You see lights flashing and you are going to pull over. Everybody would, why would you think twice of it? It's only until something like this happens."
Vickie is talking about her son and daughter-in-law being pulled over last Saturday by a fake cop. A white male followed their car for a few miles--flashed red lights--and turned on a spotlight to intimidate the young woman to step out of the car. Luckily, her husband was with her.
Vickie/Daughter-in-Law Pulled Over by Fake Cop: " My daughter-in-law got out first and faced the spotlight and then my son got out and faced it. And, as soon as he did this, the car backed up rapidly and took off down the street."
Scott Tegtmeyer/FWPD: " If you are fearful that you are being pulled over by someone who is not an officer. Your best scenario is to pull over and call 911 on your cell phone."
Tegtmeyer says 911 dispatchers can confirm officers are involved in traffic stops...that's how you can know for sure, the person pulling you over actually has the power to enforce the law.
Scott Tegtmeyer/FWPD: " The authority we are given means something to us. It's important to us that we keep the public trust and when we get a case like this. It is investigated very heartedly."
If you don't have a cell phone, police say it's absolutely acceptable for you to ask an officer to show you their identification badge. As for Vickie, she's warning every woman she knows to be suspicious.
Vickie /Daughter-in-Law Pulled Over by Fake Cop: " Be very, very, very careful. Be aware that it's not always a police officer driving those cars."
The Officer also pointed out that if you are pulled over, the first thing you should do is put on your flashers and stop in a well-lit area. Don't flee from police, but make sure you feel safe.
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