Pair face charges of posing as officers in traffic stops
Two men were arrested in connection with an ongoing case involving men posing as cops who made traffic stops in June.
The men, whose names were not released, are facing charges of attempted armed robbery, aggravated assault and impersonating a peace officer, Sgt. Maria Hawke, a Tucson Police Department spokeswoman, said in a news release.
Both were booked into the Pima County jail.
Hawke gave the following account:
The men were linked to a traffic stop made about 1 a.m. June 20 in the 4900 block of East Fifth Street.
The impostors used a dark Ford Crown Victoria that had low-profile red and blue lights above the dashboard and additional lighting in the vehicle's rear window area.
The vehicle did not have police markings on it or rooftop emergency lights.
At the time of the traffic stop, the Police Department's helicopter unit saw the lighting on the simulated police vehicle and noted the car's positioning on the roadway was not normal.
The helicopter shone its light on the cars, and its crew called for help from patrol squads.
As patrol cars approached the scene, the simulated police vehicle left the area and then stopped a short while later. The passenger in the car ran, and police captured him in a nearby neighborhood. The driver remained with the car and was questioned by police.
Both men were released, but the vehicle was seized and further investigation led to their arrests.
Detectives ask that anyone who may have been pulled over in traffic stops by men posing as officers call 911 or 88-CRIME.
The stops were made between June 10 and June 20.
The police impostors were not dressed in a police uniform, and might have identified themselves as law enforcement or government agents.
No citations were issued by the impostors.
Motorists who doubt the identity of any law enforcement officer can call 911 to verify the officer's identity, Hawke said.
Might be time to clean out that medicine cabinet
Representatives of the Pima County Sheriff's Department will be collecting unwanted and expired medications today during a Dispose-A-Med event.
Prescription and over-the-counter tablets, capsules, liquids and creams will be collected from 7 to 11 a.m. in front of the Tucson Estates multipurpose rooms, 5900 W. Western Way Circle near South Kinney Road. Metal or glass inhalation aerosol bottles, syringes and EpiPens will not be accepted.
"The service is free and anonymous - no questions asked," Deputy Tracy Suitt, spokesman for the Sheriff's Department, said in a news release.
For reasons of safety and confidentiality, any items turned over for collection cannot be returned, Suitt said. They also will not accept drugs from commercial organizations.
Since January, the Sheriff's Department has collected 1,177 pounds of unused or expired prescription drugs, Suitt said.
Anyone with questions can call the Sheriff's Department's Community Resources Unit at 351-4615.
On StarNet: Find an interactive crime map for Tucson and Pima County at azstarnet.com/crimemap