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Sheridan Police seeking cop impersonator who pulled over woman

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SHERIDAN, Colo. -- For the third time in less than a month police in the Denver metro area are warning drivers, specifically women, to be on the lookout for police impersonators.

The latest case happened in Sheridan at about 7:40 a.m. Wednesday in the northbound lane of South Sante Fe Drive near Highway 285.

Sheridan police say a woman was driving to work during rush hour and pulled over after noticing a black sedan with a spotlight on the driver's side pull up behind her with flashing lights.

"From what she recalls the lights were red and blue and they were on the dashboard," said Sheridan Police Chief Mark Campbell.

According to police, the woman handed her license and registration to what she thought was an officer, but when he returned it and asked her to step out of the car, she noticed that he wasn't wearing a badge and drove away.

"The fact that he asked her to get out of the car does concern us because there's going to be some type of escalation in the contact," Campbell said.

"I don't know what his intentions were, especially during that time with so many people around," said Lina Santagata, who lives in Denver and drives the same stretch of Sante Fe Drive regularly.

It's the third close call for female drivers in the Denver metro area in less than a month.

On March 31 a woman in Aurora fended off an impersonator after he tried to force her from her car. On March 19 a man in a pickup pulled over a woman in Parker. He briefly took her information but later sent her on her way.

Sheridan police don't believe the stop on Wednesday is related to the two previous impersonator cases, but because all three incidents remain unsolved, they say it's even more important that drivers know what to do if they are suspicious of unmarked vehicles.

"Normally, in that situation, I've been told to call police and see if they have a squad car in that area," Santagata said.

Police say that's exactly what you should do if you are unsure.

"You can take the window down a little bit to at least talk to them but tell the officer that you are going to call dispatch," Chief Campbell said. "We recommend that you call 911 because you're not going to be 100 percent sure sometimes."

According to Sheridan police most unmarked cars will also have more than one set of flashing lights, including the headlights and taillights.

"That's really a safety issue, not only for the officers but for the public," Chief Campbell said.

The woman pulled over on Wednesday said the man who pulled her over was white, between 6'2" and 6'4", had short blond hair and a thin beard. The man was wearing a dark blue, short-sleeved uniform with a police-style duty belt and black gloves. She did not see any badges or weapons.

Anyone who might have witnessed the incident or has information on the case is asked to call Det. Brett Cutler at 303-438-3246 or the Sheridan Police Department at 303-762-2211.

1 Comment

  • Robert Gift

    Surprised that anyone would do that.

    Good for her! Wish that she had called 9-1-1 with license plate number while he was in his vehicle “checking”. But why would you if you think he’s an officer?

    Try to remember license plate numbers by making them into a phrase
    ABC-123 = “Always Buy Colorado one, twenty three” repeat aloud to have audible and visual memory.

    Say into cellphone recorder.

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