FORT COLLINS, Colo. — The Fort Collins Police Services is investigating a police impersonator claim from a so-called ‘COVID-19 stay-at-home compliance stop’ conducted on March 26. A female driver was pulled over at Harmony Road and Timberline Road at 11:45 a.m.
She told FCPS an unmarked white pickup truck with red and blue flashing lights stopped her. When a male in a dark blue police uniform and police baseball cap approached, he asked for her driver’s license, proof of insurance and vehicle registration.
After taking her information to his truck, he returned all of her documents. He did not provide a name or business card. The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 45 to 50 years old, and 6 feet tall with an athletic build.
“While we are still enforcing traffic laws, Fort Collins Police officers are not conducting traffic stops solely related to COVID-19 orders,” Assistant Chief John Feyen, who leads the Patrol division, said.
“Unfortunately, criminals around the country are using COVID-19 concerns to their advantage in many ways. We will hold these people accountable for their illegal activities and encourage our community members to report any suspicious behaviors.”
The FCPS submitted these guidelines on what to do if stopped by someone who may not be a legitimate law enforcement officer:
- Call 911. Dispatchers can help determine if the person stopping you is actually an officer.
- Turn on your hazard lights. This tells the person behind you that you’re aware and taking action, and it also draws the attention of other passing vehicles.
- Stop in a well-lit, public area.
- Remain respectful but cautious.
- Ask to see a badge or identification. FCPS officers also have business cards that you can request.
- If you’re concerned for your safety, tell the 911 dispatcher and follow their instructions. Your safety is important to us.
- Try to remember as many details as possible about the person who stopped you and their vehicle so you can provide that information to police.
Police are concerned that this suspect may have stopped other vehicles as well. Drivers who have been stopped in Fort Collins for alleged “stay-home compliance checks,” or anyone with information about this incident or suspect, is asked to call Detective Mike Harres at 970-221-6543. People may also contact Crime Stoppers of Larimer County.