Man sentenced for impersonating a police officer and pulling over a woman

Chris Green
-Credit: (Image: Wiltshire Police)

A man from Peterborough has been sentenced after he impersonated a police officer and pulled over a member of the public. He was found with handcuffs and a baseball bat in the back of his car.

On May 6 last year, Chris Green, 32, of Nursery Close, Peterborough, illuminated a blue LED light in the windscreen of his non-police car to pull over a woman who was driving her vehicle in Longsplatt, Corsham in Wiltshire. Green claimed to be a police officer working for an undercover crime unit and challenged the woman on the manner of her driving.

However, after Green noticed the victim’s son in the car with her, he left the scene. The woman was concerned about the nature of the incident and immediately contacted Wiltshire Police, who were able to swiftly track and locate Green.

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When officers arrested him, an LED lightbar, handcuffs and a baseball bat were seized from the vehicle. He was subsequently charged and found guilty of impersonating a police officer in a trial on May 9.

In a hearing at Swindon Magistrates’ Court on June 28, he was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for two years. He is also required to pay £620 in costs and a £154 surcharge.

Detective Inspector Matt Smith said: “This is a very concerning and unsettling incident for the victim involved, who had every reason to believe she was being stopped by a genuine police officer.

“Fortunately, Green left the scene and the victim immediately called the police, which allowed us to locate Green quickly and arrest him. We appreciate the significant community impact that incidents like this have, particularly for women.

“If you do have concerns over whether an officer you are dealing with is genuine, there are quick steps you can take to check their identity. You can either call us on 101, or if you feel it is an emergency then call 999.

“Our officers will always understand if you wish to verify their identity with Wiltshire Police control room. I’d also ask anyone who thinks they have been victim to a similar incident to please call us on 101.”

Wiltshire Police also offers a simple verification process to the public which will allow them to confirm that an officer is on duty.

All officers can proactively offer to carry out a verification check to anyone they engage with who appears concerned for their safety or vulnerable by putting their personal issue radio on loudspeaker and asking a member of our control room to confirm who they are and that they are on duty.

This check can also be requested by any concerned member of the public. For more information, visit How to check an officer's identity | Wiltshire Police. Cambridgeshire Constabulary also have a clear process to identifying an officer's identity that you can read here.