Man Steals Vehicle While Impersonating an Odessa Officer

Man Steals Vehicle While Impersonating an Odessa Officer

ODESSA, TX (KWES) - Odessa Police believe someone else is going around Odessa allegedly pretending to be a cop. A man asked to search a car at a 7-Eleven then sped off in the vehicle.

The incident happened at the 7-Eleven on 3660 West 8th Street in Odessa.

The suspect approached a parked vehicle and asked to search it. He then asked the driver if he had any drugs, alcohol or weapons inside of the car.

Cpl. Steve LeSueur, with the Odessa Police Department, said, "The complainant advised that the person told him that he needed to move the vehicle, get inside of it and move it to a well lit area so that he could better search it. At which point the subject gets into the vehicle and simply takes off with his vehicle."

Officials say the cop impersonator was a white man dressed in plain clothes with dirty blonde hair. He did not have any weapons on him and wasn't displaying a badge. Residents of Odessa say it would take a lot more for a man in plain clothes to get them out of their cars.

Kathi Case, a state employee, said, "Since I have a badge that I carry to identify myself on my job, I would want to see his badge too. I'd wanna just make sure that it was really an officer and not somebody off of the street."

Clarissa Heath and Ashley Dixon, believe that this situation seemed far from normal protocol.

"In that situation, OPD wouldn't approach you like that at all," said Heath.

"So he probably never has been pulled over by police or had anything to do with the police if he didn't know anything like that," said Dixon.

This is the third case of impersonating an officer that has been reported in Odessa this year but police believe there are many more.

"We've had several of these cases so far this year of people impersonating a public servant. Whether someone attempts to pull you over or that someone confronts you, or just simply tells you they're a police officer, it's always important to see whether or not they're displaying a badge," said LeSueur.

If you have suspicions, police also advise drivers to call their local police department to verify that the person pulling you over is a legitimate police officer.