Police looking for woman impersonating officer

TYLER (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - Tyler police are searching for a woman they say has presented herself as an officer before stealing from at least two Hispanic victims in the past several weeks.

Tyler police spokesman Don Martin said the woman first stole a man's wallet earlier in the month and then stole several items from another man at a local car wash Sunday.

Both victims have been Hispanic men, and police believe the woman may be targeting them because they may not know protocol on police searches.

Martin said the first incident took place at the D&N Grocery on West Bow Street on Oct. 7.

According to reports the woman, a white female about 40 years old, asked the man for $10, and when he told her no she pulled out a badge and identified herself as an officer.

"The suspect took the victim's wallet out of his pants, and then left in a small gray Nissan car," he said.

Martin said the woman struck again about 8:10 p.m. Sunday at a carwash at 5030 Texas Highway 31 West.

Martin said the victim reported an unknown white female with short brown hair, possibly in her 40s, about 5-foot-5 and 130 pounds, approached him as he was parked near the car vacuums.
"She presented a badge that led him to believe that she was a police officer. She informed him that she was going to search his car or he was going to be arrested," he said. "After searching his car, she stole a few unknown items from him. She then left in a dark-colored compact vehicle."

Martin warned residents to ask questions of anyone not wearing a uniform who is requesting they allow a search or demand money.

Martin said if unsure, a person has the right to call police dispatchers to learn whether the person is in fact an officer and they also can request a marked unit and uniformed officer to the scene.

Anyone with information about the person involved in this crime is urged to contact the Tyler Police Department, at 903-531-1000, or Crimestoppers at 903-597-2833.


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