Mounties in North Vancouver are asking for the public’s help to identify a suspect after a driver was pulled over in what police are describing as a “fraudulent traffic stop.”
In a statement Tuesday afternoon, RCMP said at approximately 3:30 a.m. Monday, a driver going eastbound along E 13th Street near Moody Avenue in the City of North Vancouver was pulled over “after seeing red and blue flashing lights displayed on the vehicle behind them.”
“Moments later, a man who was wearing a vest and hat displaying ‘POLICE’ approached the driver and identified himself as ‘NVPD,’” the Mounties said in a statement. “The suspect did not appear to be wearing a fully equipped police duty belt, but did appear to be wearing a baton-type tool on his belt.”
According to the police, the suspect told the driver that he had been pulled over for using a GPS device on his cell phone, and then produced a debit/credit machine and demanded payment for the alleged violation.
RCMP says the driver sensed the situation was “highly suspicious,” drove away, and called police immediately.
“It is alarming to us anytime someone pretends to be a police officer. Especially in our situation where that person tried to use that position to take money from someone,” North Vancouver Cpl. Melissa Jongema said.
Driving a navy or dark grey Chevrolet Tahoe with flashing red and blue lights on the dashboard, the suspect is described as being in his late 20s. He was wearing a black crewneck t-shirt and navy cargo pants. He was also wearing a vest and hat both of which had ‘POLICE’ written in white letters.
“Police officers do not accept payment for violation tickets at traffic stops. If you are pulled over and payment for a fine is demanded, please immediately report the incident to police,” Jongema said.
Anyone who witnessed the incident, has dashcam footage, or has information about the suspect or the Chevrolet Tahoe is being urged to contact North Vancouver RCMP at (604) 985-1311.