Colo. man arrested for impersonating firefighter

An officer saw an SUV driving down Highway 40 while “flashing red and blue emergency lights,” the Grand County Sheriff’s Office said

By Paloma Chavez
The Charlotte Observer

HOT SULPHUR SPRINGS, Ark. —A 32-year-old man in Colorado lied about being a firefighter after he was pulled over while using emergency lights, authorities said.

At about 5:20 p.m. on Jan. 13, a sergeant with the Grand County Sheriff’s Office saw a white SUV driving down Highway 40 near Granby “flashing red and blue emergency lights,” according to a Facebook post by the sheriff’s office.

The sergeant didn’t recognize the SUV as a first responder vehicle and “conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle,” according to the release.

Upon being pulled over, the 32-year-old man said he was a firefighter, police said.

Officials said that based on previous information, the sergeant knew that the man was not a firefighter and “did not have the legal authority or proper permitting to be using emergency lighting.”

Volunteers who have to use emergency lights need to have approval by their agency and State of Colorado documentation, according to the release.

The sheriff’s office said the man was arrested and sent to Grand County Jail on charges of impersonating a public servant, illegal use and possession of emergency red and blue lights, violation of temporary instruction permit and failure to present evidence of insurance.

“The public puts their trust in emergency responders which often includes the usage of our emergency lights as we respond to emergency incidents,” Sheriff Brett Schroetlin said, according to the release. “When an unauthorized person impersonates a public official, it diminishes public trust and will not be tolerated.”

Anyone with information on other impersonation incidents is asked to call 970-725-3311.

Granby is about 90 miles northwest of Denver.

©2023 The Charlotte Observer.
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service
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