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OPP investigating reports of someone impersonating an officer in Wellington County

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Ontario Provincial Police say they have been receiving reports that someone has been impersonating an officer in Wellington County.

In a news release, OPP said a man has reportedly been stopping people and asking if they are an essential worker amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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“The OPP is not conducting random traffic stops to check motorists’ work status during the COVID-19 pandemic, nor are drivers required to prove they are an essential worker to police,” Acting Insp. Paul Richardson said.

Police said in one incident on April 14, a driver was reportedly pulled over by a man pretending to be a police officer and asked to prove if they were an essential worker.

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Nothing else came of the incident but police said the fake cop was wearing a ballistic vest with the word “police” in yellowish-orange letters across the front, but not on the back.

He was also driving a black four-door sedan that may have been a Ford Fusion or Ford Taurus. Police said there was a blue strobe light on the dash and an antenna on the trunk.

OPP said drivers are within their rights to ask for identification or request a uniformed officer be present if they are pulled over by a plain-clothed officer driving an unmarked vehicle.

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Drivers can also call 911 if they have reason to believe the person is not a police officer.

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Anyone with information on this incident or something similar can call Wellington County OPP at 1-888-310-1122. Anonymous tips can be submitted through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or through its website.

Residents can find more information regarding restrictions during the pandemic can be found on the OPP’s website.

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