A Central Texas volunteer firefighter has been suspended after being arrested and charged with impersonating a public servant in Waco on Wednesday night.
Waco Police said 31-year-old David Vann Reese, a Beverly Hills volunteer firefighter attempted conduct a traffic stop of a vehicle without having any law enforcement authority to do so.
Around 9 p.m. Reese reportedly turned one red and white emergency lights in his maroon SUV to stop the vehicle in the parking lot of Rudy’s BBQ located in the 2500 block of Circle road.
"For whatever reason, he turned them on, to try to stop this car. We believe it was over a minor traffic infraction or disagreement,” Waco Police Department Spokesman Sgt. Patrick Swanton said.
Police said Reese who was wearing a black shirt and black pants approached the victim and demanded the victim’s driver’s license and insurance.
"When the victim saw he was not in uniform. He asked him who he was. At that point our suspect got pretty nervous, got into the car and left the scene,” Swanton said.
The victim gave police Reese’s license plate number and police were able to track the suspect back to a home on the 900 block of Clay Avenue.
Reese was later arrested and charged with impersonating a public servant.
"The victim told officers that Reese did not look like the Police and that he appeared to be intoxicated," according to Waco Police.
Swanton said officers or detectives will always identify themselves when they conduct a traffic stop, even if they're not in uniform.
"In the event that the person doesn't think that we're an officer, then it's fine to call 911 and say 'I'm being stopped at this parking lot. I don't recognize the car' and then our dispatchers can find out whether is law enforcement," Swanton said.
He adds officers and detectives also have badges or ID cards that indicate they are law enforcement.
"They also have the capability of asking 'can you have an officer in uniform come here' and we're more than happy to do that to satisfy them that we're in fact law enforcement," Swanton said.
According to the Beverly Hills Volunteer Fire Department, the department is waiting to get additional details about the incident from Waco Police. Reese who has been with the department for a few years will not be able to respond to calls for now.
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