NEW CASTLE, Ind. – A man was charged after he reportedly activated red and blue emergency lights in July.
Court records showed 54-year-old David O. Imel, II was charged with impersonation of a law enforcement officer, Level 6 Felony in a filing on Sept. 11.
Police said on July 27, Imel was traveling down Indiana Avenue in New Castle in a compact passenger car with activated “red and blue” emergency lights.
The Henry County sheriff’s deputy then saw the vehicle in front of Imel’s “abruptly pull to the left” which allowed Imel to pass on the right with its lights still activated and pull into the nearby CVS parking lot.
Officers then initiated a traffic stop on Imel. The deputy called for assistance and a sergeant with the New Castle Police Department responded.
The probable cause said officers also noticed a small shelving compartment in the back of Imel’s vehicle with a large decal stating “Fugitive Recovery” along with several warning stickers that there were also cameras inside.
Police said they told Imel that in the state of Indiana, only law enforcement are allowed to have red and blue flashing lights in their vehicle.
Imel had begun shouting at the officers saying, “he was sorry and it was a mistake.”
Imel also told officers that the decals (which are magnetic) are for when he does contract work for bail bondsman agencies, like Goodwin’s Bail Bonds. He added that he mostly did work in Florida but also had a contract for New Castle.
The man told officers that the bondsman contract was for over a decade ago and he hadn’t done any contract work for Goodwin’s recently due to “his health condition.”
Police said Imel explained he didn’t know about the law against red and blue lights, but the chief informed the sergeant that Imel was cited for unlawful use of emergency lights in 2014 on his old Jeep.
The man then told officers he kept the lights on his vehicle as “theft deterrent.”
Court documents said officers then arrested Imel for impersonating a public servant, posing as a law enforcement officer.
Officers also said they seized the red and blue emergency visor lights and “Fugitive Recovery” decals as evidence.
A jury trial was scheduled for Dec. 20 at 9 a.m.