JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – Smart thinking by a Jefferson County woman and her teenage son led to the arrest of a man accused of posing as a federal agent. Michael David Nelson was arrested Wednesday for investigation of impersonating a peace officer and false imprisonment.
It was Tuesday morning when Stephanie Troyer and her son were headed down Interstate 70 from Lookout Mountain. Troyer told CBS4’s Rick Sallinger a pickup truck passed her and she looked at the driver.
“He flashed what looked a metallic badge. I saw the reflection of the metal and motioned me to pull over,” she said.
Suspicious, she pulled over and asked her son to record the exchange on his phone. It captured the man coming up to the car saying, “What’s the rush?”
Troyer is seen arguing with the man who had no law enforcement markings on his truck or clothing.
“You’re not supposed to pass on the right you passed on left,” she said in the video.
“I was in a passing lane that’s a non-passing lane. You passed on the left, you passed on the right. Let me see your ID,” the man responded.
The truck and car had pulled over on C-470 near West Alameda Parkway. The man was persistent as seen in the video.
“I need to see your ID and registration,” he demanded.
“I’m too scared,” Troyer replied.
“It’s ok, I’m a federal agent, I’m a federal agent,” the man countered.
Troyer responded that she wanted him to produce proof of his authority.
“I need to see yours,” she says on the recording.”
“Ok I am going to call in back up right now,” the man responded.
The man produced a badge that said “Interpol,” which stands for the International Criminal Police Organization. We found such badges for sale on the internet for $39 under “fake badges.”
Troyer said she was now even more suspicious.
Interpol issues red alerts for high profile international criminals. Neither Stephanie nor her son Bradley are on the list.
When the man went back to his truck, Troyer drove off and provided the sheriff’s office with their video.
The picture off the man was distributed across social media. The Morrison police chief recognized the man as Michael David Nelson, who he had ticketed recently. Nelson appeared via video Thursday in Jefferson County court to be advised of the charges against him.