'Fake Cop' Busted by Real Officers After Driving Around With 'Forensics for Dummies' Book in Trunk

A local man bought a cop car at an auction and became a police officer in his own mind.

An Alabama man was arrested after allegedly pretending to be a police officer in his local town, armed only with nothing but an unmarked cop car, some lights and Forensics for Dummies in the trunk. 

Jonathan Cole, 36, of Pleasant Grove, was caught Tuesday by police after stopping on a town road with all of his “police” lights on in the Crown Victoria he was driving, Lt. Danny Reid said.

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Cole initially told police he was a Birmingham police officer and gave officers the number to the Birmingham department as his badge number, Reid said.

In his car, which he reportedly bought at an auction, police said they found a bright, yellow vest with the words “police” written on it and a book titled “Forensics for Dummies.”

It may have been a fitting title, as police said Cole told them he was stopped because he couldn’t figure out how to turn the police lights off, even though there was a switch inside of the vehicle to do so.

“Nothing he said made sense,” Reid said.

Police said they eventually found that Cole bought the old cop car from an auction and the lights he added to it were bought online. 

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They also said he was the same "officer" residents had complained was speeding around town with his lights on earlier that day.

Cole is charged with impersonating a police officer. His bond was set at $5,000.

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