How to Protect Yourself Against Police Impersonators

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How to Protect Yourself Against Police Impersonators

Are you sure that is a Police officer pulling you over?

Recently, Police in Grande Prairie, Alberta, reported a man, impersonating an undercover police officer, had pulled over a vehicle with a woman driver. When the man approached the woman without showing proper documentation, and asked her to get out of the vehicle, the woman’s good sense and intuition led her to drive away and report the incident to law enforcement.

What would you have done in this situation?

Do you know how to stay safe?

 10 Tips for Protecting Yourself Against Police Impersonators

  1. Ensure the law enforcement vehicle stopping you is legitimate, with fixed flashing lights, and proper markings.
  2. If possible, slowly drive your vehicle to a well-lit, and/or well-populated area.
  3. Once parked, leave your vehicle running, and activate your emergency flashers.
  4. Lock your doors.
  5. If the approaching “officer” makes odd requests, or proposes you exit the vehicle, ask to see their badge and identification. Look closely to assure the credentials are authentic. Explain you are unsure of your situation.
  6. Confirm that the person is wearing official police clothing and equipment.
  7. Do not get out of your vehicle, unless asked to do so by a legitimate officer. Police usually prefer you to stay inside.
  8. If the vehicle is unmarked, and the person is in plainclothes—in addition to asking for identification, ask to have a marked police vehicle respond, explaining your reason. Inquire where the person works, and if you can call to check their identity.
  9. Legitimate officers usually request your driver’s license, and proof of registration and insurance. Listen closely to what the person is saying, to ensure it seems appropriate.
  10. Trust your intuition. If something seems odd, or if the “officer” doesn’t agree to your reasonable requests, tell them you will call 911 to confirm their identity, and then, do it.


Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Oregon State Police

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