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Official: Sheriff’s detective, not impersonator, stopped woman

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013, at 11:25 a.m.
  • Updated Saturday, Oct. 26, 2013, at 6:44 a.m.

Earlier Thursday, Wichita police said they were investigating a report of an impersonator stopping a woman for a traffic violation.

But it appears to have been a legitimate stop by a Sedgwick County sheriff’s detective, a sheriff’s official said later in the day.

Wichita police had been investigating a report of someone impersonating an officer after a 30-year-old woman called 911 to report that she had been pulled over in the 3500 block of South Seneca shortly before 6 p.m. Monday by someone in an unmarked car, police Lt. Doug Nolte said earlier Thursday. The man took her personal information but did not issue a citation. The woman was suspicious after the incident and called 911.

Later Thursday, sheriff’s Lt. David Mattingly said it turns out that the woman was stopped by a sheriff’s detective for speeding and having an expired tag. The detective, using his discretion, did not issue a citation, Mattingly said.

Mattingly said he spoke with the detective, who said he immediately identified himself to the woman as a sheriff’s detective. The detective showed his badge and wore a jacket with “sheriff” on it, Mattingly said.

It is standard procedure in traffic stops for a sheriff’s officer, “especially in plain clothes,” to identify himself, he said.

The detective, driving an unmarked sheriff’s vehicle, had his emergency lights activated, Mattingly said.

The detective also followed standard procedure by calling in the traffic stop to the emergency dispatch system. That step is primarily for an officer’s protection, Mattingly said.

Mattingly said he didn’t know whether the woman had filed a formal complaint.

Reach Stan Finger at 316-268-6437 or sfinger@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @StanFinger.

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