Crime Stoppers is hoping the potential of a financial reward will spur some tips in an unsolved North Vancouver case.
North Vancouver RCMP warned the public on July 19 after a man impersonating an officer conducted a bogus traffic stop and attempted to shake down a local driver.
The non-profit issued a release on Tuesday (July 26) labelling the incident their "crime of the week."
"If you have any information regarding the incident listed here, please contact Crime Stoppers anonymously. You could be eligible for a reward of up to $5,000 upon arrest and charge. You will never be asked your name or have to appear in court," a release from the agency states.
The incident happened around 3:30 a.m. on July 18. The driver was headed east on 13th Street near Moody Avenue when he saw flashing blue and red lights coming from the dash on the vehicle behind him.
The driver pulled over and a man wearing a vest and hat with “POLICE” printed on them approached, identifying himself as “NVPD.”
Although he wasn’t wearing a fully equipped duty belt, the suspect did appear to have a baton in a tool belt, according to Cpl. Melissa Jongema, North Vancouver RCMP spokesperson.
The suspect told the driver he’d been pulled over for “using GPS on his cellphone,” and demanded payment on the spot for the violation, using a debit/credit machine. The driver then wisely realized something was highly suspicious, left the scene and called police.
“It is alarming to us anytime someone pretends to be a police officer, especially in our situation where that person tried to use that position to take money from someone,” Jongema said in a release. "Police officers do not accept payment for violation tickets at traffic stops. If you are pulled over and payment for a fine is demanded, please immediately report the incident to police.”
Now the real cops are hoping the public can help them track down the fake one.
Police describe the suspect as a white male between 25 and 30 years old. He stands approximately five-foot-nine, with an average build. Underneath his vest, he was wearing a black round-neck T-shirt, as well as navy cargo pants. He was driving a navy or dark grey Chevrolet Tahoe.
North Vancouver RCMP are asking anyone who witnessed the incident, including those who have dashcam footage from the area at the time, or those with information about the suspect or the Chevrolet Tahoe to contact North Vancouver RCMP at 604-985-1311.