There are certain regulations and guidelines that all actual police must follow, and it is critical to learn how to recognize and protect yourself from fake cops. Specific rules true police officers must follow include:
- Even if the police officer is driving an unmarked vehicle, they must still wear a full police uniform in order to stop a driver for a suspected violation – if you are pulled over and determine the person is not in a police uniform, drive away quickly and call 911 to report it and to verify whether the person is a fake cop or a valid police officer.
- If an unmarked police car is legitimate, it will also have antennas and flashing lights.
- Police officers are required to show you their badge and allow you to write down their number – if they quickly flash their badge, but refuse to allow you to write down their number, they are not legitimate.
What to Do If You Suspect a Person Is Imitating a Cop
If you have concerns about the legitimacy of a police officer, slow down and turn on your flashers to let the officer know you are aware of their presence, then drive to an area of safety and call 911 to verify you are being followed by an actual police officer and not a fake. If a cop is actually pulling you over, they will have already reported it to 911 who can then confirm their validity. If you believe a fake cop is knocking on your door, do not open the door and call 911. Emergency responders should always be ready to verify if a cop is at your front door.
Legal Remedies for Fake Cop Victims