By Jeremy Rochow
Last updated on: September 26, 2019 at 8:27 am
Most of us have been pulled over by the police on at least one occasion, but has something ever felt amiss, almost like the person you’re speaking to isn’t actually a cop?
That’s the frightening situation a South Australian motorist faced in September, when 2 men impersonating police officers pulled him over.
The motorist was allegedly stopped by the pair at Marion. The men identified themselves as police officers and issued him a fine.
They then drove him to a petrol station where they asked him to withdraw money from an ATM.
The pair were arrested the following day and charged with impersonating a police officer, unlawful detention and aggravated robbery.
Following the incident, SA Police released a statement reminding motorists that South Australian police officers would never request money or any form of payment for offences when they pull you over.
While it’s rare for people to impersonate police officers, it does happen. In fact, 3 men pretending to be police officers robbed a motorist in 2017.
So, what should you do if you’re concerned the person who just pulled you over is pretending to be a cop?
First, check if the police car is marked. If it is, and the occupants are wearing uniforms, you should follow their directions – these are real police. Failure to do so is an offence that could lead to serious penalties.
If a car is unmarked and the occupants aren’t wearing uniforms, ask to see their identification.
If you believe the person who’s pulled you over is impersonating a police officer and you’re concerned about their behaviour, SA Police recommend you stop at a place you feel safe, such as well-lit area.
Keep your doors locked and windows closed. Advise the person that you’re calling police to verify their identity; if you’re still unsure, call 000.