INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (March 29, 2016) -- Indianapolis police are investigating after they say a man pretended to be a police officer only to run into the real thing.
Police say the suspect was working security at a local church on Easter Sunday when the altercation took place.
They've opened their doors to help the public meet members of the IMPD in the past. Community involvement is a top priority at the Blended Church on Indy’s west side.
“We`re reaching out to the community and making a difference in this city,” said pastor Dehner Maurer.
Maurer says the last thing anyone associated with the church would do is pretend to be a police officer, but that allegedly happened Easter Sunday.
After services let out, thousands of church-goers were trying to exit onto Country Club Road and the church had security officers directing traffic.
“The road is 40 miles per hour and it`s hard to see, so we just try to help people be safe,” said Maurer.
According to the police report, one security worker identified as Roderick Greene told a driver to slow down and added "I'm a police officer you need to do what I say."
The driver, an off-duty IMPD officer, asked the suspect which agency he was a police officer for and he stated, "IMPD.”
At that point the real officer pulled out her department-issued identification.
In fact, IMPD says one of the ways to avoid falling victim to someone impersonating law enforcement is to ask for proper ID.
“Anytime you`re stopped by someone claiming to be law enforcement, there are many things you can do. If you don't feel comfortable, absolutely ask for identification,” said IMPD Sgt. Catherine Cummings.
In this case, the off-duty officer called for on-duty police to investigate, but the suspect left the scene before they arrived.
For his part, pastor Maurer believes the run-in is just a big misunderstanding.
“I don`t know what happened. There were lots of people out there and I think two people just had a disagreement. I’m not sure,” said Maurer.
Church administrators say the suspect worked as a police officer in Florida, but is no longer a member of law enforcement.