Seattle police ID suspected cop impersonator

Seattle police say Ryan Purdy, 46, who also goes by the name Tracy Byers, posed as an undercover officer in Volunteer Park and robbed three victims of their cash and credit cards. (Photo: Seattle Police Department) | Zoom
The Seattle Police Department has identified the man they believe has been impersonating an undercover officer in Volunteer Park.

Ryan Purdy, 46, who also goes by the name Tracy Byers, is accused of robbing three people of their wallets after flashing a gold badge and telling them he was an undercover officer working the area.

"An undercover officer isn't going to tell you he's an officer," said Detective Jeff Kappel with SPD. "That's kind of a clue that this guy isn't who he says he is."

Kappel said real badges will clearly be marked with the department's name and jurisdiction. He also said anyone who questions whether an undercover officer is legitimate should ask for a uniformed officer to respond to the scene.

If you have information on Purdy's whereabouts, you are asked to contact the SPD Robbery Unit at (206) 684-5535 or call 911. Detectives are also asking for anyone who may have had contact with Purdy in the park to contact SPD.

Brandi Kruse, KIRO Radio Reporter
Brandi Kruse is a reporter for KIRO Radio who is as spontaneous and adventurous in her free time as she is on the job. Brandi arrived at KIRO Radio in March 2011 and has already collected three regional Edward R. Murrow awards for her reporting.
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