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Cops Let Man Get Away With Painting Car Like Police Cruiser

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posted on Mar, 13 2008 @ 04:38 PM

LAS VEGAS, N.M. — Jessie Vigil's black-and-white car sports a red-and-blue emergency bar across the top and the word "police" painted on the doors.

Cops Let Man Get Away With Painting Car Like Police Cruiser

I'm going to do this to my truck so everyone drives safely and slowly around me!

Any thoughts on whether this is a good or bad thing?

Personally, I think people will start taking advantage of this situation. Maybe this particular person isn't acting like a cop, but I'll bet there are people out there that will use this to their advantage. Posers placing people under arrest in order to kidnap, terrorize them. Sickos tempting kids off the streets....don't all parents tell their kids to trust the police? This could be a really bad situation...


posted on Mar, 13 2008 @ 04:54 PM
Personally I don't like the idea.
Here's a snip from further down on the link you provided above.

He said he called the district attorney's office beforehand and spoke to Chief Deputy District Attorney Joe Ulibarri, who tried to discourage his decorating scheme but couldn't find anything in the law that would stop Vigil as long as he didn't impersonate an officer.

Ulibarri said a state law prevents people from mimicking state police cars, which are painted black and white. But he also said the state police sell their old cars to private citizens without changing the colors.

"Are we violating our own law by not repainting them?" he asked.

He called the state law vague, and noted that normal state police cars aren't Mustangs.

As far as I'm concerned he is impersonating an officer by the mere fact that he's driving a vehicle that gives the impression he is an officer.

Here in Canada if an officer is not driving a police vehicle, such as a mechanic out for a test drive, or a car being moved to a garage or other location by someone other than an officer, the car must have the light bar covered with a sign clearly marking it as "OUT OF SERVICE".

I don't think he should be allowed to drive this on a public road, and they really need to clarify their law to put a stop to this sort of modification.

posted on Mar, 13 2008 @ 05:00 PM
I think it's artistic freedom of self expression and protected under the constitution. As long as the car does not pass close scruitiny. Maybe there needs to be a requirement that cars resembling Police cars need to be noted against a register.

Here in NZ we have a number of people painting their American imports as black and white cruisers. It always raises a giggle.

In NZ it is illegal to use flashing blue and red lights except on a Police car.

posted on Mar, 13 2008 @ 05:26 PM

Originally posted by sy.gunson

In NZ it is illegal to use flashing blue and red lights except on a Police car.

I thought I'd add an excerpt from the Highway Traffic Act for my jurisdiction.

Intermittent red light restricted

(14) Subject to subsections (14.1) and (15), no person shall use a lamp, other than the vehicular hazard warning signal lamps commonly known as four way flashers, that produces intermittent flashes of red light. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 62 (14); 2007, c. 13, s. 17 (1).

Red and blue lights to the front restricted

(14.1) In addition to the lighting requirements in this Part, a police department vehicle may carry lamps that cast red and blue lights, but no other motor vehicle shall carry any lamp that casts red and blue lights to the front. 2007, c. 13, s. 17 (2).

Red light in front

(15) In addition to the lighting requirements in this Part, a vehicle described in subsection (15.1) may carry lamps that cast a red light only or such other colour of light that may, with the approval of the ministry, be designated by a by-law of the municipality in which the vehicle is operated, but no other motor vehicle shall carry any lamp that casts a red light to the front. 1998, c. 35, s. 103.


(15.1) The following are vehicles to which subsection (15) applies:

1. An ambulance, fire department vehicle, police department vehicle, public utility emergency vehicle or school bus.

2. A ministry vehicle operated by an officer appointed for carrying out the provisions of this Act or the Public Vehicles Act, while the officer is in the course of his or her employment.

3. A vehicle while operated by a conservation officer, fishery officer, provincial park officer or mine rescue training officer, while the officer is in the course of his or her employment.

4. A vehicle while operated by a provincial officer designated under the Environmental Protection Act, the Nutrient Management Act, 2002, the Ontario Water Resources Act, or the Pesticides Act, while the officer is in the course of his or her employment.

5. A prescribed class or type of vehicle, driven by a prescribed class of persons or engaged in a prescribed activity or in prescribed conditions or circumstances. 1998, c. 35, s. 103; 2002, c. 4, s. 64; 2002, c. 18, Sched. P, s. 19 (2); 2007, c. 13, s. 17 (3, 4).

And then there is this law from Colorado:

“Lacy’s Law” makes impersonating a police officer a felony and criminalizes the illegal possession or use of red or blue police lights.

(Fort Collins) – Gov. Bill Owens today signed H.B. 1003, stiffening the penalty for impersonating a police officer and criminalizing the use or possession of red and blue lights.

“Those who impersonate law-enforcement officers undermine the public’s trust in the men and women charged with protecting us. Impersonating a police officer is an inexcusable act,” said Owens. “Today, we are stiffening the penalties for violating the public trust in this way, and ensuring that criminals who misuse law-enforcement symbols are stopped before they act.”

The bill was prompted by the 2003 abduction and murder of Lacy Miller, a 20-year-old student at the University of Northern Colorado, by a man impersonating a police officer. The man used flashing red and blue lights to pull Miller over. A 2003 law passed after the murder made police impersonation a class 1 misdemeanor. The law signed today makes impersonating a police officer a class 6 felony, resulting in higher fines and increased jail time for habitual offenders.

Also included in the bill is a ban on the possession and use of red or blue police lights by persons not involved in law enforcement. Illegal possession or use of blue or red lights is a class 1 misdemeanor.

This Google link will take you to a number of horror stories of people being endangered due to people impersonating an officer.

Impersonating an Officer

This guys car seems to fall within the law because the light bar is not functional, but still, if I looked in my mirror and saw this car I would think it was official.:shk:

EDIT: spelling

[edit on 13/3/2008 by anxietydisorder]


posted on Mar, 13 2008 @ 06:04 PM
Even Geek Squad had to repaint their black and white VW Beetles because they shared the police color scheme... and they had GEEK SQUAD written on the side!

It's definitely impersonating a police officer. What's going to happen when someone tries to flag this car down instead of calling 911? That minute wasted to correct the mistake could cost someone their life.

I always wanted to paint a car like a cop car with a big picture of Porky Pig on the hood and rotating sprinkled and glazed donuts on the roof. Never got around to it.

posted on May, 17 2008 @ 06:41 PM
reply to post by anxietydisorder
I did this to my crown victoria. nothing the cops can do about it. instead of just police I put in big letters police and underit about the size of a penciel line I put the rock band tribute. That made all the differance.

posted on May, 17 2008 @ 10:26 PM
Just one question.

What jurisdiction did you do this in.

You can't do this in most countries, many parts of the States, and even local by-laws in some places forbid impersonating a police vehicle.
Yes, some countries allow period vehicles to be painted like a police car if the car is an antiquity or has a permit to be used in a show or on a movie set. But for the most part it is illegal to impersonate an official, be it by vehicle or uniform.

posted on Jul, 9 2008 @ 10:27 AM
I think this is cool.
I would do this when I get a car.

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