Largo Man Accused of Impersonating Cop
He flashed red and white emergency lights and blue-tinted headlights at another motorist, according to Pasco sheriff’s deputies.
PASCO COUNTY – A Largo man has been accused of pretending to be a law enforcement officer while in a confrontation with another driver, according to the Pasco Sheriff’s Office.
John William Dawson, 49, of Largo, was charged with one count of impersonating a law enforcement officer. Deputies said the Florida Department of Law Enforcement does not have Dawson listed as a certified law enforcement officer.
“I urge everyone, if they feel uncomfortable with a situation similar to this, to proceed safely to a well lit area and call 911,” Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco said. “I cannot stress this safety message enough and I am thankful this case was resolved with an arrest.”
The incident happened about 4:19 p.m. Monday (June 19). Deputies said Dawson was driving his 2012 Chevrolet Impala, which had a Florida Fraternal Order of Police tag, westbound on State Road 54 in Lutz. Dawson used red and white emergency style lights that he had mounted to his car’s dashboard to flag down the driver who was ahead of him in traffic. Dawson also flashed his car’s headlights, which have a blue tint, deputies said.
The other motorist pulled into the parking lot of a nearby business and videotaped the ensuing encounter on his cell phone. Deputies said that, as Dawson got out of the Chevrolet, he placed a necklace with what appeared to be a law enforcement badge around his neck.
Dawson told the motorist to “slow down.” He told the driver that he was on a “call” and would arrest the man if the motorist ever followed him again. Deputies said Dawson order the man to immediately leave the area.
The motorist picked Dawson out of a photo pack. After Dawson was arrested Thursday (June 21), he told deputies he saw the motorist driving erratically so he used the red and white emergency type lights and flashed his blue tinted headlights to try to get the man to slow down. Deputies said Dawson also told them he placed the badge around his neck when the motorist contacted him about the incident. Dawson told deputies he later threw the badge in a garbage can at an unidentified business.
No one was injured during the incident.
For information about the Pasco sheriff, go to pascosheriff.com.
Pasco Sheriff | Crime | Impersonating a Cop | Arrests | Tampa Bay News | TB Reporter
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