Police Impersonators Rob Tulsa Man
TULSA, Oklahoma - Tulsa Police are searching for suspects who impersonated police and robbed two men at the Bristol Park Apartment complex, 11200 East 45th Street South.
Authorities say a man noticed he was being followed to his home at the apartments around midnight Sunday night. Two men in a minivan pulled in behind him and approached him.
The victim told officers the two men appeared to be law enforcement. They carried guns and radios and had badges attached to their belts.
They detained him and made him empty his pockets, and then after they let him go, it became quite obvious to him that they were not real officers.
The fake officers told the Hispanic man they were following him because his vehicle matched one they were looking for and asked him for his immigration papers, so he handed over his wallet and everything in his pockets.
He said they rummaged through his things, which were on the trunk of the car, then told him they'd been notified over the police radio he didn't have any warrants, so he was free to go.
Only after they drove off, did the man realize they had stolen $200 from his wallet.
"With this population - Hispanic population - being targeted, that's always a big concern for us," Dalsing said. "They tend to carry a lot of cash.
"Apparently these suspects said some things about immigration which we would never do."
These cases pop up from time to time.
Barry Baker, Jr. was recently arrested in Oklahoma City after a police chase.
He's accused of portraying himself as an officer in at least three different counties.
Sergeant Brandon Watkins, TPD, said, "Nothing makes a police officer angrier than somebody impersonating us."
Police say it's easy to buy police light bars, badges and uniforms online.
If you have any doubt, call 911, and ask them if an officer is at your location.
You can always ask to see their supervisor and their commission card, which is harder to duplicate than a generic badge.
Police say impersonators damage the relationship real officers work so hard to create with citizens.
"We need the help of the community and when we have someone pretending to be us, besmirching us, it makes our job harder. It's not something we take lightly," Watkins said.
Another thing you should know is, if you get pulled over by an unmarked vehicle, state law says the officer must be wearing a full police uniform, not jeans and a police t-shirt.
If you are in a secluded area and just aren't sure, wave to the officer and drive slowly to the nearest well lit, well populated area and pull over there.
Police are still looking for the men. One is black and the other white. Both are in their 20s, officers said. The suspects were last seen driving an older model green minivan.
If you know anything that can help police with this crime, call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.