A Surprise, Ariz. resident was - not so surprisingly - found guilty on Tuesday on one of two charges of impersonating a peace officer.
On May 12, 2009, 62-year-old David Word, driving in an unmarked black Ford Crown Victoria, activated emergency lights and siren and stopped a car, which he deemed was going 75 mph.
That car, however, was the personal vehicle of Peace Officer Matt Lydic, who was on his way to work at the Avondale Police Department.
Officer Lydic stopped his vehicle, and Word pulled up alongside him, told Lydic to "slow down" and then drove away, according to police records.
When Lydic saw the vehicle next to him, he noticed that the car was equipped with items not usually found in civilian vehicles - a partial safety barrier & half cage, as well as a mounted computer- items much like those found in standard police automobiles. Officer Lydic then documented the car's license plate number, and found that the vehicle was registered to a David Word. Word was subsequently arrested at his home the evening of the incident.
This was not the first time that Word was accused of impersonating a peace officer, just the first time he was convicted. On April 29, 2009, five days prior to his incident with Officer Lydic, Word allegedly pulled over a member of the state's liquor board for driving in the carpool lane. Word was acquitted of those charges. Sentencing for Officer - er, excuse me - Mr. Word is scheduled for May.