Man impersonating police officer tries to pull over real cops in unmarked car

An Arizona man was charged last week with impersonating a police officer after he pulled over two state troopers who were patrolling in an unmarked car.

Matthew Allen Disbro, 44, of Mesa, was booked Wednesday into the Maricopa County Jail.

Arizona Department of Public Safety officials said two troopers were patrolling State Route 51 in an unmarked yellow Ford Mustang when they saw a black Dodge Charger, equipped with police-style lighting, through their rear window. The troopers ran a registration check on the license plate and discovered the car belonged to a private citizen.

Credit: Arizona Department of Public Safety

Credit: Arizona Department of Public Safety

A few moments later, the driver of the Charger activated his flashing lights and tried to pull the Mustang over, officials said in a news release. When the troopers did not pull over, the driver pulled up alongside them and started yelling and waving, indicating that they needed to pull over.

The troopers turned the tables, activating their own lights and pulling the driver, later identified as Disbro, over, the news release said.

Disbro, who was taken into custody, works as a uniformed, armed security guard, investigators said. His Charger was not only equipped with lights, but also with a police siren and radio scanner.

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"Motorists need to feel confident that when they are pulled over by law enforcement they are dealing with a state-certified peace officer," Department of Public Safety Maj. Deston Coleman said in a statement. "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."

Investigators released images and a brief video of the Charger in an effort to find any citizens who were pulled over by Disbro under the guise of a police officer. Anyone who had contact with him in that way is asked to call investigators at 602-644-5805.

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