MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Fake officer pulling drivers over in Kitsap County

Feb 26, 2024, 7:00 PM | Updated: Feb 27, 2024, 8:07 am

fake officer kitsap county...

(Photo courtesy of Kitsap County Sheriff's Office)

(Photo courtesy of Kitsap County Sheriff's Office)

The Kitsap County Sherriff’s Office (KCSO) is warning drivers of a fake officer stopping cars for undetermined reasons, according to authorities.

Kitsap County Sheriff John Gese told KIRO Newsradio the impersonator was good enough that people are pulling over.

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One woman, who was stopped south of Port Orchard this weekend, did grow suspicious and called 911. She said the phony officer was driving a dark, four-door Dodge Charger with a spotlight on the driver’s side. The sedan had red and blue emergency lights on its front grill, but no lights on its roof. The word “Washington” is on the car’s side.

“She had been stopped by a man claiming to be a law enforcement officer but reported his behavior as suspicious,” KSCO stated in a prepared statement on X. “KCSO Deputies investigated and determined the traffic stop was not made by any state or local law enforcement agencies.”

Kitsap County deputies are reminding drivers they do not have to stop immediately on contact. They can drive slowly to a spot where they feel safe to stop and the officer will follow.

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“Slow down put your flashers on and drive to a place that’s well lit and public and safe,” Kevin McCarty, the public information officer for KCSO, told KIRO Newsradio. “Any legitimate law enforcement officer is going to understand that you’re doing that for your safety. You can certainly ask for an officer’s badge you can ask for their name law enforcement officers are going to make an attempt right away to let you know who they are and identify themselves as law enforcement officers.

“There have been illegitimate traffic stops,” McCarty continued. “If you’re concerned about it, any legitimate law enforcement officer is going to do their best to put you at ease let you know you’re safe and give you that information.”

The charge for impersonating a police officer in Washington is second-degree criminal impersonation — a gross misdemeanor — and can carry a sentence of up to a year in jail.

Contributing: Chris Martin, KIRO Newsradio

Frank Sumrall is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here and you can email him here.

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Fake officer pulling drivers over in Kitsap County