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TAMPA — A 24-year-old Palmetto man was charged Sunday by the Tampa Police Department with impersonating an officer, unlawful use of a blue light and carrying a concealed weapon. It’s the second time in three months Jonathan Charles Stevens of the 8000 block of Woodlawn Circle in Palmetto has reportedly impersonated a law officer, which is a felony. He was first charged Sept. 16 by the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office with impersonating a police officer and making a traffic stop on a motorist in the parking lot of Ellenton Premium Outlets, 5461 Factory Shops Blvd. The Tampa Police Department reportedly arrested Stevens at 11:03 p.m. Sunday at a 17th Street North and Seventh Avenue East. The TPD reports Stevens was driving the same white 2009 Chevy Tahoe equipped with flashing red-and-blue emergency lights he had when arrested in Manatee County. This time, Stevens reportedly activated his vehicle lights to stop a Tampa police officer to report a reckless driver. Stevens reportedly said he was a homeland security officer and had a Glock .45-caliber handgun and a badge around his neck, which the officer said she found suspicious. Just before turning on his emergency lights, Stevens also called TPD dispatch to report the same information. As the officer Stevens had stopped continued to talk with him, TPD personnel reportedly discovered the vehicle was not registered to a government agency. Upon questioning, Stevens reportedly admitted he was not employed by a government agency and doesn’t have a concealed weapon permit. He was arrested and released Monday morning on $17,500 bond. In the earlier Manatee County arrest, two detectives in an undercover vehicle reportedly saw the driver of a Tahoe with flashing blue-and-red emergency lights, black rims, spotlight, tinted windows and a regular Florida license tag, stop a woman driving a car. After the stop, detectives say the driver exited his vehicle and entered Starbucks. Using binoculars, the detectives reportedly ran a check to find the Tahoe was not registered law enforcement. A few days later, detectives said the woman who had been stopped told them the person identified himself as “an off-duty officer.” Stevens later admitted to conducting the stop, the sheriff’s office said. Stevens was released then after posting a $2,000 bond, according to the sheriff’s office website. His Manatee County case remains open.
For Immediate Release
For more information contact:
Andrea Davis, Tampa Police Spokesperson
Suspect Arrested for Impersonating a Police Officer
Tampa, FL December 30, 2013 -
WHEN: 12/29/2013 @ 10:30 PM
WHERE: 17th Street North and 7th Avenue East
SUSPECT: Jonathan Charles Stevens, 07/17/1989, W/M, 8004 Woodlawn Circle, Palmetto
CHARGES: Impersonating a police officer, unlawful use of a blue light and carrying a concealed firearm
VEHICLE: 2009 White Chevy Tahoe SUV
DETAILS: The suspect was driving a white Chevy Tahoe equipped with flashing red & blue emergency lights. The suspect activated the emergency lights to stop a Tampa Police officer so he could report a reckless driver. He said he was a Homeland Security officer and he had a gun and a badge around his neck. Just before turning on his lights, he also called dispatch to report the same information as well. The officer found the suspect’s actions suspicious so she continued to talk to the suspect and also discovered the vehicle was not registered to a government agency. Upon further questioning, the suspect admitted he was not employed by a government agency. He doesn’t have a concealed weapon permit.
MAJOR LEAGUE DOOR KICKIN'
Originally Posted by glocklove View Post
And this comin from an FHP guy, oh boy where gonna get lost now................
sho 'nuff bro ....
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Stevens was first arrested over the weekend. Police said the 24-year-old used flashing lights in his personal car to pull over a Tampa Police cruiser, in Ybor City.
He is then accused of approaching the officer, wearing a badge around his neck and carrying a gun without a permit.
The officer was suspicious, so he ran a check on Steven's plates, uncovered the alleged deception and took him into custody.
Stevens posted bond and got out of jail on Sunday, but officers investigating that case say they learned of an earlier incident of Stevens passing himself off as law enforcement officer.
He's now accused of trying to get a law enforcement discount at the Acropolis restaurant in Ybor City, which landed him back in jail.
His family and attorney believe he deserves leniency:
"He is an Army veteran who was injured when his humvee rolled over and then he was beaten severely and almost died," said his attorney.
His lawyer also said Stevens is on half a dozen medications to treat mental illness and on morphine to help with severe pain.
"He suffers from severe PTSD as well as night terrors as well as some other mental issues as well." he said.
Prosecutors don't agree, arguing Stevens faces similar charges in Manatee County, where his mother lives.
But that didn't sway the judge - who granted Stevens a $4,000-dollar bond.
"He obviously needs a lot of help and he needs to make sure he is getting his medication," said Judge Huey.
The judge also issued other strict guidelines, including ordering Stevens to move in with his mother for the tine being and that he cannot carry a gun.