Motorist pulled over by police impersonator on Hwy 33 near Westbridge

Warning of imposter officer

RCMP are warning motorists in B.C.’s Boundary region to be vigilant after a report of a police impersonator pulling over a vehicle on Highway 33.

Police were called just after 8:30 p.m. on Sunday about a yet-to-be identified suspect who conducted the traffic stop on a motorist travelling between Rock Creek and Kelowna.

RCMP say the motorist was in the Westbridge area when the suspect vehicle, a white pickup, pulled out behind him and followed for a short distance. The truck then activated red and blue lights installed in the pickup's grill.

The victim pulled to the side of the roadway and the suspect driver approached his vehicle carrying a flashlight.

“Although the victim exited his vehicle briefly during the interaction, he managed to re-enter his truck and flee towards Kelowna,” states Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey, a spokesman for the BC RCMP in the Southeast District.

“The suspect reportedly followed the victim for several kilometres before pulling off the highway. The victim contacted a family member when he entered into cell service range, who in turn reported the incident to police.”

The unknown suspect was described as an older man with blonde unkempt hair, between six foot and six-foot-two. He was clean shaven and seen wearing a white dress shirt, with a dark pair of casual pants.

Anyone with any additional information is asked to contact the Midway RCMP at 250-449-2244.

RCMP offer the following tips to motorists who believe they are being stopped an non-legitimate police vehicle:

Slow down, drive in a safe manner to the nearest well-lit, populated area.

If this is not possible, do the following:

  • Lock all doors, pull over safely and leave your vehicle running;
  • If you have a cellular phone, take it out immediately, hold it in full view of the person who has pulled you over and call 911;
  • Calmly give the 911 operator your location and express your concern;
  • Ask the 911 operator / police dispatcher if they have had any communication with a police officer about a traffic stop in your area and ask them to relay your concerns to that law enforcement officer;
  • Tell the officer, through a cracked window and locked door, that you plan to cooperate, but you have heard about police impersonators. Indicate that you are concerned for your safety, and that you are verifying the police contact through dispatch;
  • If you remain uncertain that the person who pulled you over is in fact a police officer, ask him/her if you can proceed to a more populated area. If he/she agrees, tell the 911 dispatcher where you are heading to and proceed.

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