Robbers impersonating Baltimore police hold up victims at gunpoint, real cops say

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Baltimore police say gun-toting thieves are also showing fake police badges to rob people on the street

(CBS) BALTIMORE - Baltimore City Police are warning locals that impersonators are on the loose, claiming to be officers and then robbing victims on the street.

CBS Baltimore is reporting that the fake cops have badges, guns, and claim they are city police. They jump out of SUVs and rob their victims at gunpoint.

Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says, "This is incredibly troubling. This is a situation where individuals are posing as police officers. They're preying on the trust that police have with the public, and really, victims are utterly vulnerable."

There were three attacks reported over the weekend, all taking place in the Patterson Park area. The police impersonators are specifically targeting the Hispanic immigrant population, CBS Baltimore reported.

"They are preying on their fear of immigration status for those who may not be here legally in the United States at this time," said Jeanne Velez, who holds monthly crime meetings at the Assisi House of St. Patrick Church, Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The attacks all took place between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. Police are stepping up patrols until the suspects are apprehended. The vehicle used in the attacks is described as either a green Ford Explorer or a blue Expedition.

Officers say they will not inquire about any of the victims' immigration status, adding they just want information the suspects.