Indy tow truck driver threatened by IMPD police impersonator

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Indianapolis police are searching for a man who may have posed as a police officer this week.

The victim, who works as a local tow truck driver, claims he was threatened by the police impersonator on Indy's west side.

The tow driver told police he was towing a car from the Spinnaker apartment complex on 38th street when a man identified himself as an IMPD officer and angrily threatened to arrest him.

While those circumstances are unique, police say reports of impersonators are nothing new.

“Well it’s not going to be the first or last time we see someone impersonating a police officer and that’s very dangerous,” said IMPD officer Jim Gillespie.

In fact a search of police records shows at least 3 times in the last 3 months the IMPD has investigated possible impersonators.

In one police report filed in August, a woman claimed she was stopped on Guion road by a man wearing a blue uniform and gun belt and robbed at gunpoint by the police impersonator.

In a report taken in July, another woman told police she got pulled over on Southport road.  During the traffic stop the woman asked to see the fake officers ID and the suspect took off.

Police say asking to see an officers ID or asking to call a supervisor are two things people can do anytime they suspect they're being confronted by an impersonator.

“All of our officers should the ID on them.  It’s another thing they can present to show we’re the real deal, not only the badge and gun, but also police ID,” said Gillespie.

Officer Gillespie says people can also call 911 to verify the officer confronting them is legit.

“For example, if you’re on a traffic stop and you feel uncomfortable, you can call 911 left them know where you’re at and they can verify if they have an officer on scene over the phone,” said Gillespie.

None of the victims in the three recent cases were hurt in any way, but no arrests have been made, so anyone with information on any of the suspects is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS.

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