Police: Fake cop arrested; search continues for second suspect

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

By Marisela Burgos

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (September 4, 2014)-- One man has been arrested for pretending to be a police officer and authorities are looking for a second suspect who was also putting on a show.

William Merritt has been charged with robbery, impersonation of a public servant and criminal confinement.

The victim of the crime said Merritt and another man approached him off Lynhurst Dr. on the southwest side of Indianapolis. He recollected they pretended to ask for backup and cursed at him. The victim said he was working on his truck around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday. He was near the Whiskey River Bar.

The victim said the suspects were driving a Crown Victoria. According to court documents, they identified themselves as ‘Vice Cops’ and asked him for the guns and dope. The victim asked to see their badges and claims the men never showed them. The victim believed they were impersonators so he drove off, but noticed a sheriff’s association license plate so that is why he stopped again, the report read. The report stated one of the men searched the man’s truck and the other man made him to sit on the curb.

“Normally what will happen is when an undercover officer engages a suspect in an incident, they would ask for uniform officers to back them up so everyone knows they are the police,” IMPD Sgt. Kendale Adams said.

Sgt. Adams said their officers would never act in the manner described by the victim. Sgt. Adams said their department has strict guidelines about what is on an officers car and the report stated IMPD officers noticed there was a 'thin blue line' plate and sticker on the suspect car.

“Police officers in Marion County have some type of identifying insignia –whether it be a badge (or) whether it be a vest that usually says sheriff,” Sgt. Adams said.

If anyone has any information they should contact authorities. According to the probable cause, Merritt denied being involved in a robbery. The victim told detectives he was missing his cell phone and some cash.

“Hopefully we can get him to tell us who this other individual was so we can arrest him so he can be held accountable for his actions,” Sgt. Adams said.