Sgt. Sledgehammer at it Again – Fake Cop Reported in Rochester
Rochester, MN (KROC-AM) - A police impersonator known as Sergeant Sledgehammer has struck again.
Rochester Police Captain Casey Moilanen says officers responded Friday after a woman reported she had been pulled over by a man wearing a name tag that read "Sledgehammer." A police impersonator wearing the same name tag was involved in a similar incident last Wednesday in Stewartville.
The most recent incident occurred around 3:30 PM Friday after the woman turned onto Bandel Road Northwest from 65th Street. She told investigators she stopped for what she believed was a Rochester Police Officer, who went back to what appeared to a police vehicle and drove away after giving the motorist a verbal warning for speeding.
She described him as white, about 25-years-old, 6-feet tall, with a thin build and a tattoo on his neck. He was wearing a baseball cap with Rochester Police written on it and a black tactical-style vest. He also carried a handgun holstered on his hip.
Captain Moilanen says the fake police vehicle was a black SUV equipped with emergency lights that might have been on the inside of the vehicle. Rochester Police was displayed on both sides of the vehicle.
The Rochester Police Department is asking anyone with information relating to this incident to please contact Investigator Garrett Johnson at 507-328-6923. Anonymous tips can be sent to Crime Stoppers at www.rochesterolmstedcrimestoppers.org.
If drivers are unsure if the person stopping them is a police officer they may do the following:
- Turn your hazards on and pull over in a public area that has people. At night, drive to a well-lit area.
- Dial 911 while looking for a safe place to stop. Be aware of your location so you can describe it to the dispatcher. Confirm with the dispatcher that a legitimate officer is stopping you.
- Lock your doors and only put your window down a few inches.
- Look for a uniform or other official Rochester Police markings on the subject's clothing.
- If you are still unsure, explain to the officer that you are uneasy with the situation and ask to see the officer’s official department photo identification and badge. Make note of the officer’s name and department.
- Do not reach for your phone when the subject is near your vehicle. If the subject is an officer he/she may believe you’re looking for a weapon. Instead, first, tell the subject you would like to reach for your phone to dial 911 to confirm the subject is a legitimate police officer.
Anyone with information relating to this incident to please contact Investigator Garrett Johnson at 507-328-6923. Anonymous tips can be sent to Crime Stoppers at www.rochesterolmstedcrimestoppers.org.