She Thought He Was Fake Cop, But He Turns Out Legit - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/25/2008-Tyler

She Thought He Was Fake Cop, But He Turns Out Legit

Followed and pulled over by an unmarked car. It's a scenario both police and KLTV 7 have warned you about, but one agency says this time, it was justified. For the past two days a young East Texas woman thought she was pulled over by a fake police officer, and after doing an interview with us, it turns out the officer was legitimate.

The officer was not in uniform and in unmarked car. We've told you before from numerous law enforcement agencies that it is rare, if not an emergency, to be pulled over by an officers in plain clothes.

21 year old Ashley was driving to her boyfriends house around 11 pm Sunday night when she was pulled over on cumberland road.

"All I'm thinking is oh crap I'm getting pulled over," said Ashley, "It had blue flashing lights in the dash board and that's when I pulled over. This guy came out had a flash light looking in my window. I kept my window cracked and doors locked."

When asked why she was going so fast Ashley answered said she was going to her boyfriends house, when he asked for her boyfriend's name that's when Ashley thought something was suspicious.

"I know it wasn't a cop car because it didn't have the lights on the top of the car like they usually do," said Ashley, "He made me feel very uncomfortable."

Ashley says she didn't see a badge, but the man did say he was working with the Constable's Office.

"I felt like it wasn't right because he made me feel uncomfortable the way he was talking and asking quiestion's," said Ashley.

It was a Constable in fact, a Deputy Constable out of Frank Creath's office. Creath wouldn't go on camera but said on the phone that his deputy did not violate policy, pulling Ashley over because he thought she might have been intoxicated.  But when it turns out she wasn't, he gave her a warning. Creath said his deputy identified himself and was wearing a badge.

But this isn't the end. We've told you on numerous occassions from multiple law enforcement agencies that officers don't pull people over not in uniform.

Today we spoke to the Smith County Sheriff's Department and Tyler Police who both have that policy in place.

"We have a policy prohibiting that. If an off duty officer sees somebody committing a crime they are supposed to call the dispatcher, who would then call an on duty police car, and stop them that way," said Tyler Police Chief Swindle.

Chief Swindle said that action makes it clear it's a police officer, and agreed this incident clouds the issue.

"Especially in the City Limits of Tyler. It does confuse the issue. I would agree 100%," said Swindle.

Even though it was a legitimate officer this time, it has legitimate lessons for you at home. Police suggested if you are concerned of an officers legitimacy espcecially late at night to call 911 and ask if you are being pulled over. Police also suggested driving to a well lit area, but want to remind you to obey all traffic laws on the way there.

Danielle Capper, Reporting. dcapper@kltv.com

 

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