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Steps to Detect Fake Traffic Stops

The Cherokee County Sheriff's Office offers these tips.

Across metro Atlanta, there have been reports of fake traffic stops.

in Paulding County, according to Dallas-Hiram Patch.

Hall County authorities in April arrested a Monroe man who allegedly pretended to be a police officer, according to CBS Atlanta.

"In light of recent events in neighboring jurisdictions, the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office would like to advise motorists that if they are ever in the process of being pulled over, there are certain steps they can take to reassure them it is a legitimate stop," Lt. Jay Baker, spokesman for the , said in a Monday alert.

  • Slow down and turn on your hazard lights.
  • If at night, drive slowly and safely to a well lit and populated area.
  • Call 911 and advise the dispatcher where you are and that you are concerned someone other than a police officer is trying to stop you.
  • If you do not have the capabilities of calling 911 from your vehicle, after pulling over, only roll your window down enough to allow for additional conversation with the person until you feel comfortable you are speaking with a legitimate law enforcement officer. 
philip litrel August 28, 2012 at 11:05 AM
good reporting............why am I not able to forward this story?????????
Don Plummer August 28, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Thanks for the compliment, Philip. Rodney is a good reporter. I'm sorry you had problems forwarding the article Did you try emailing it? That worked when I tried.
Erin Romeo August 28, 2012 at 06:12 PM
Thank you - thank you!
Richie Harris August 28, 2012 at 08:05 PM
So much to say about this. We have two forms of theft here. One is legal, one is not. It has been so long since traffic tickets have been about "Public Safety" that I can't remember. With the exception of wreckless driving, or DUI the rest of traffic citations can be chalked up to "Revenue Enhancement". As for the cop impersonators, the advice that the Sheriff's Office is giving is good but I feel sorry for the poor innocent motorist who puts it to use and angers a self righteous traffic cop. If you don't stop instantly and humble yourself before them they will go off on you. And don't ever ask them why they stopped you.
Rico August 29, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Well Richie as a former COP I am of two minds about your remarks. I acknowledge that traffic citations are all about revenue for the most part. There are City Mayors and County Commissioners all over putting pressure on chiefs to have their officers write more tickets because they are desperate for revenue. Unfortunately there are some officers who are over zealous or will play fast and loose with the facts just to cite somebody. This makes the good guys look bad and I believe that most are good. I suppose you could say that COPS need to "police" themselves so as not to write questionable tickets. I don't think that will happen though.
Richie Harris August 29, 2012 at 11:16 PM
Well Rico I got a ticket for taking off my seat belt at a traffic light just to adjust it. It was off and on in 10 seconds. The Traffic Nazi said I should have pulled over. I wonder if he would have pulled over.
Rico August 30, 2012 at 12:05 PM
What can one say other than embarrassing? This is how they get get bad reputations that impact business and tourism. It's short sighted on the part of mayors and commissioners but as long as people take it and don't complain in numbers it won't stop.
Computer Bunnee August 30, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Yep - call 911 while the cop waits for the call center to confirm its a real cop. I am sure the cop will let you know they were real with a whooping big fat ticket.
Fast Eddie September 01, 2012 at 06:02 AM
The moniker on police cruisers reads To protect and Serve,which interpreted really means To cover my arse and Serve my Ego !

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