An Arizona man who allegedly pretended to be a police officer may have pushed his luck just a little too far.
Police in Mesa announced that they arrested Matthew Allen Disbro for impersonating an officer when the 44-year-old threw on a law-enforcement style flashing light in his car and pulled over a yellow Ford Mustang — that just happened to be an unmarked police car. As KTAR reported, the man turned on the lights while driving on State Route 51, attempting to pull over the troopers inside. When they did not pull over, Disbro allegedly drove alongside their car and began yelling and waving his hand at them.
The troopers turned on the emergency lights in their own car and pulled over Disbro, a uniformed security guard who was driving in his personal vehicle, the report noted. Police said that Disbro’s car was equipped not only with emergency lights but also a siren and police scanner, the Arizona Republic reported.
Police said the alleged actions of Disbro undermined the public trust in police, as motorists need to feel safe when they see flashing lights behind them.
“Motorists need to feel confident that when they are pulled over by law enforcement they are dealing with a state – certified peace officer,” AZDPS Major Deston Coleman of the Highway Patrol Division said after Disbro’s arrest. “Criminal behavior like that exhibited by the suspect, undermines public confidence and makes it difficult for troopers and other law enforcement officers to perform their job.”
This is not the first time someone impersonating a police officer was caught when allegedly trying to pull over a real cop. Last year, a Kentucky man was arrested for allegedly trying to pull over an off-duty police officer. As CBS News noted, 24-year-old Brandon Hurley pulled a U-turn and drove behind a vehicle that he tried to pull over with flashing lights.
As court officials later said, that car happened to belong to a police officer who was off-duty at the time. Hurley was arrested and charged with impersonating a police officer.
“The officer passed the defendant. The defendant then did a U-turn in the road and got behind affiant’s vehicle,” Judge Sean Delahanty said after the man’s arrest. “That’s just some bad luck there.”
Police are now searching for anyone else who may have been stopped by Matthew Allen Disbro in his Dodge Charger, asking anyone who was pulled over to contact the police department.