U.S. man impersonating cop, pulls over real cop

Tyree Appleberry said he never pretended to be a cop.

On Thursday, KOB Eyewitness News 4 incorrectly reported that he had been arrested for impersonating an officer.

But Albuquerque Police only gave him a misdemeanor citation for the offense.

An APD spokesperson said police have the option to arrest someone who impersonates a police officer and charge them with a felony.

But Appleberry's wasn’t arrested for the charge because he said he is innocent.

"At no time did I say I was a cop, did I pretend to be a cop, did I badge anybody. At no time did that happen," said Appleberry.

On Wednesday, Appleberry, 42, reportedly pulled over an undercover officer, impersonated an officer and then tried to flee.

Apppleberry denied the allegations "I was picking up a friend of mine from her job where she works security,” he said. “While I was waiting, a vehicle pulled up along the outside gates."

He explained as they left the auto auction yard where his friend works, the unmarked vehicle remained, and they stopped to ask questions.

"I turned in behind the vehicle and the vehicle immediately took off at a high rate of speed,” Appleberry said.

He explained they followed the vehicle down Gibson and got the license plate number when the vehicle stopped.

"I pulled up behind him like kind of still in the roadway and I turned on my strobe lights and I asked him who he was,” Appleberry said. “He said he was a cop. I said, ‘OK anyone can say you're a cop but do you have ID?’"

Appleberry explained that he looked at the officer's ID but the officer didn’t show a badge.

"I said, ‘ok, we were just wondering why you were you parked outside of this gate where we have vehicles being impounded,’" Appleberry said.

That's when the officer frisked him and arrested Appleberry for an outstanding warrant he had for a traffic citation, he said.

"To my family and friends I do apologize for this misunderstanding with the Albuquerque Police Department,” he said. “It was no such thing that happened whatsoever. I was not arrested for impersonating a cop."

An APD spokesperson said it is up to the officer to decide if someone will get a misdemeanor citation or a felony arrest.


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