Fake cop pulling over drivers in Spring Hill | News
SPRING HILL, Florida - The fake cop is what everyone is talking about at The Press Box family restaurant in Spring Hill.
Marie Heitz and her husband, Robert, were eating there Tuesday night. Marie says, "He's an absolute nut. And we've got too many of them on the road. We really, really do. It's scary."
They wonder what will happen if he pulls over the wrong person next time. Robert says, "[He'll] pick on somebody with a gun. That's what'll happen."
And that's what the sheriff of Hernando County is worried about the most. Sheriff Al Nienhuis says, "This is front burner stuff for us. We're definitely investigating it hot and heavy."
The sheriff says on Monday evening around 5:30 p.m. someone impersonating a law enforcement officer pulled over a woman in a Spring Hill neighborhood at Bern Lane and Waterfall Drive on suspicion of driving under the influence.
The man didn't ask her to get out of her vehicle, but directed her to drive a mile and a half or so away to a much busier area, a doctors office located at Spring Hill Drive and Kass Circle.
He was in an unmarked white Crown Victoria car. He had a police style spotlight and a single red flashing light that he placed on the roof. He did not display a weapon.
Investigators say he forced the woman to take a field sobriety test before letting her go. Sheriff Nienhuis adds, "That's extremely unusual. So, we really want to get these people found and put them in jail."
The sheriff believes two different people may be doing this. The latest incident was the third one this month.
At the doctor's office, patients seem stunned by the news.
Wendy Serafin says, "That's crazy. I can't understand what he could be plotting to do. I mean, there's gotta be more to it. In the end, that's the things you have to look out for, because the next time it might not be so simple."
Sheriff Nienhuis says in Hernando County it's okay to call 911 if you're being pulled over and you're not sure whether the deputy is real or not. "Don't hesitate whatsoever to call 911, and chances are if it is a legitimate law enforcement officer, we're going to know about it or we're going to be able to find out about it, even if it's another agency."
He says they'll send a deputy to you to check it out. He adds, "No law enforcement officer should ever, ever hesitate to show you a photo ID or a badge."
The suspect is described as a White male, approximately 45 years old, 6'1", 220 pounds, with brown hair, and a gray mustache. He was last seen wearing a green polo and dark pants. Investigators say he did not display a weapon or any law enforcement credentials.