A man who used red and blue flashing lights and a loudspeaker to order another motorist out of his vehicle in the Venetian Isles area of St. Petersburg Monday night was later found passed out behind the wheel and was arrested, police report.
Police say Willard Harlow Moore, 45, faces charges of impersonating a police officer, driving under the influence and refusing to submit for DUI testing. Moore has a current address in Ohio but has a history of traffic infractions, including a previous DUI arrest, in Pinellas County.
The incident began about 8 p.m. in the area of Iowa Avenue NE and Grand Canal Boulevard NE when Moore was driving a Dodge Ram truck with Ohio plates. He pulled in behind another motorist, turned on blue and red flashing lights and used a loudspeaker to order the other driver to exit his vehicle and come to the side of his, arrest reports state.
The other motorist asked Moore if he needed help from police. Moore responded: “I am the police and I could arrest you,” reports state. Moore also told the man he was in trouble. The other motorist called police.
Officers later found Moore in the 2000 block of Hawaii Avenue NE, where he was passed out in the driver’s seat. When he woke up, he told officers he was a retired officer from Ohio. Officers noted that the vehicle was equipped with blue and red lights on the windshield and a siren.
Officers also noted that he showed signs of impairment, including boozy breath, slurred speech and bloodshot eyes. He refused to take a blood alcohol test, reports state.
Police said Moore later admitted to them that he had never been a police officer. He was released from the Pinellas County jail Tuesday morning after posting $5,650 bail.
Court records show Moore has a record in Pinellas County that includes a previous DUI arrest and multiple infractions for speeding, careless driving, reckless driving, failing to yield and driving with a suspended or invalid license.