MIAMI – A man arrested for impersonating a police officer has brought attention to a very serious issue.
Authorities are now warning the public of the dangers it presents.
“It certainly raises concern for officers,” said City of Miami Police Officer Kiara Delva. “It is disturbing that this person is portraying himself to be a police officer.”
Miami police arrested Louis Lugo earlier this week after asked to assist actual officers who were on duty.
He was driving a vehicle with an installed light bar, and Lugo was equipped with a duty belt, handcuffs, a baton, and a firearm.
Lugo’s car was featured on Instagram posts from a company called Florida Emergency Lighting. The posts were sent to Local 10 News by a viewer who follows Lugo on the social media platform.
The same white SUV also appears on Lugo’s Facebook page.
“We can confirm the officers made contact with this subject and arrested him,” Delva said. “He was operating a vehicle similar to the one we saw on the phone which is why we want our community to be very careful.”
His arrest happened Sunday off Southwest 7th Street in Miami. Officers said Lugo actually approached them and asked if they needed help.
“At this time, it is a bit confusing and disturbing,” Delva said when asked why she thinks someone would approach officers and offer to help them in the line of duty.
On Wednesday, a person drove up in the decked-out SUV to Lugo’s home, but no one would come out of the car.
On Tuesday Local 10 News went to Lugo’s home to ask about the arrest.
“We have a police report that explains everything, so we want to ask you if you want to answer to it,” Local 10 News’ Bridgette Matter said to Lugo.
“I don’t understand, that doesn’t make sense why you guys would have a police report about something that has to do with my personal self,” he responded.
Matter explained that the arrest report was for him allegedly impersonating an officer.
“I was arrested because they wanted to presume I was impersonating a police officer,” Lugo responded.
Meanwhile, Delva reiterated how dangerous it is for a civilian to impersonate any law enforcement official.
“He should be making it his priority to get that equipment out of his vehicle because he is not a law enforcement officer,” she said.