Police: Man Posed as Officer, Assaulted Woman

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Sketch provided by the Modesto Police Department

Sketch provided by the Modesto Police Department

MODESTO --

Detectives say a man posed as a Modesto police officer in the early morning hours of Nov. 26, 2015, when he confronted a woman who was stopped in her car along 13th Street because of mechanical problems.

"They had a short conversation, and he got into her passenger seat of her car... she drove away with him," said Heather Graves of the Modesto Police Department.

That's something a legitimate police officer would not do -- get into a civilian's car.

In plain dark sweats and a baseball cap, and no police identification, the phony cop threatened to arrest the woman for parking violations.

The woman then drove down the street.

"... a couple of blocks to a parking lot, where she stopped briefly. He assaulted her, exposed himself," Graves said.

That's when the victim drove out of the parking lot and toward a group of people, whose presence apparently spooked the suspect enough to get him out of her car.

The victim was all right. The suspect is described as white or Hispanic, between 20 and 30 years old, weighing about 240 pounds.

Investigators are hoping viewers may recognize the suspect and call police. Meanwhile, if there are any doubts that you're dealing with a legitimate police officer, aside from asking to see identification they can call police.

"If they don't feel that this is an officer... call a non-emergency number and talk to dispatch," Graves added.