With a fraudulent car, uniform, and badge, a man pulled over a Mountain driver on Friday, police say

Hood of a Hamilton Police car.

(Dave Beatty)

Police are advising the public that a man impersonating an officer performed a fraudulent traffic stop last Friday, and they had not apprehended a suspect as of Tuesday, Sept. 27.

According to the police press release, in the mid-afternoon of Friday, September 23, a woman driving in the area of Hamilton’s Miles Road and Airport Road was pulled over by an unmarked car.

Police say the woman thought she was being stopped by a real police officer because the car looked similar to unmarked car and had a flashing light on the dashboard.

According to police, a man “wearing some kind of uniform” got out of the car and told the woman he was police, “flashing some kind of badge quickly.” Then, police say he demanded she get out of her car without giving any reason.

Right away, police say the woman questioned this odd behaviour and let him know she was calling the (real) police.

At that point, police say the man promptly got back in his car and drove off without another word.

The following is directly from the police report:

  • Vehicle as described: Older Ford Crown Victoria, black or dark blue in colour, all black tires/rims.
  • Suspect as described: White, male, late 40’s to early 50’s, 6′-6’2″, muscular build, bald (shiny head), brown/grey goatee, and has a deep voice.
  • Clothing as described: Wearing a short sleeved shirt with shoulder flashes, some kind of badge and name tag, dark pants (without a red stripe), and had some kind of a holster on his side.

The Hamilton Police Service is offering the following advice to anyone who is suspicious of a police officer’s legitimacy at a traffic stop:

  • Make sure the vehicle has distinct markings with the word “POLICE”.
  • If the vehicle is not a marked unit, the emergency lights should be built in and are usually not a temporary light placed on the vehicle.
  • Should you have concerns that the person you are encountering is not a police officer, call 9-1-1
  • Try to stop your vehicle in a well-lit area or a location where there are other people present.
  • Turn on your emergency flashers but don’t turn off your vehicle.
  • Do not get out of the vehicle to meet the officer. Let them approach first. Officers prefer people to stay in their vehicle for their safety.
  • If you are asked to exit the vehicle but are not satisfied with the officer’s identity ask them for clarification.
  • Lock your vehicle door before anyone approaches your vehicle.
  • Look for a uniform, official department jacket, and other equipment used by police officers in the performance of their duties.
  • Pay attention to what the officer is asking. Most officers will advise you of the reason for the stop and request your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance.
  • If they immediately tell you to get out of the car without any preliminary questions, be suspicious.
  • Trust your instincts. If they don’t seem to be a real police officer, they are probably not.
  • If the officer is in plainclothes, look for identifying clothing and equipment. If unsure, explain to the officer that you are unsure about the situation and ask them to display official department identification and badge.
  • Ask where they work and tell them you are going to contact their dispatch center to confirm their identity. You may also request that a marked patrol unit respond.

Detectives are asking anyone with information about this crime to call 905 546-3873, or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477. You can also submit CrimeStoppers reports online.

Source: CBC News Hamilton