This Bay Area Redditor got the shock of her life when she was pulled over by an unmarked SUV, given a proper dressing down, and handed a stern verbal warning. But was it a power play fueled by road rage?
A Redditor by the username ScrimpSounds, who we’ll refer to as SS from now on, shared a terrifying experience she had on the 580 earlier today (Feb. 25, 2019) on /r/BayArea. While driving along, minding their own business on the 580, an unmarked black SUV cuts her off at least three times before switching on a set of blue lights and ordering SS to pull over. The alleged firefighter, dressed only in a polo with a fire fighter’s emblem, asks SS for their papers, scolds SS for driving erratically, and then leaves after giving SS a warning. You can read SS’s account of what happened in the thread below.
SS posted her frightening experience in hopes that someone else in /r/BayArea might have experienced something similar. In addition, SS hoped someone could give him or her some advice on what to do now that the experience is over and if there’s any legal recourse.
Unfortunately, most commenting agreed that more than likely, this person in an unmarked SUV was either a firefighter peace officer or a member of Calfire. While CalFire law enforcement officers can pull you over, it’s highly unlikely they’d do so under any official capacity.
SS has a right to be concerned as there are a handful of cases, in recent times, of innocent drivers being pulled over by people impersonating California law enforcement.
According to an ABC 30 report from just a few weeks ago, a middle-aged man in Madera was finally caught after he pulled over, intimidated, and handcuffed several Hispanic drivers for no particular reason.
Long story short, this alleged peace officer or CalFire law enforcement rep more than likely went off on an anger-fueled “power trip” on SS.
While some /r/BayArea redditors gave some grade A advice, this top comment sums it up quite nicely on what to do if you’re pulled over and you have suspicions on the cops credentials.
“If you’re being “pulled over” by someone who you aren’t sure is a cop, call 911 (or local PD’s emergency number if they haven’t modernized 911 yet, like Oakland.) They will be able to confirm whether it is a cop and whether you need to comply.”
I’ll keep an eye on this story to see if there are further developments.
Have you been pulled over by an unmarked car like this before? Let me know about your experience in the comments below.