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Portland police searching for man posing as undercover police officer

Portland police are asking for the public's help in finding a man who posed as an undercover police officer and stopped a woman to search her car on Sunday.

After stopping at a Plaid Pantry convenience store on Jan. 12, at approximately 1:30 a.m., a 33-year-old woman notices she was being followed by an unknown vehicle as she left the parking lot at southeast Grand Avenue and east Burnside Street.

The victim told police that the driver of the vehicle was flashing its headlights and using a phone with a flashing white and possibly blue light. After driving to the area of north Vancouver Avenue and Ainsworth Street near a friend's house, she stopped and got out to confront the driver.

After she got out of her car, the man in the car that had been following her got out and flashed a badge in a wallet at her and identified himself as an undercover police officer. The victim told police that the man explained that he saw her talking to a drug dealer outside of Plaid Pantry and then asked to search her car, which she allowed him to do. The victim watched the man search her car and appear to put something into his pocket.

The victim asked the man for his business card, which he did not provide, and the man drove away. The victim then noticed that she was missing a small amount of money from her purse.

The victim described the suspect as a white male, 40 to 50 years old, short in stature with a skinny build.

He was driving a white 1990s Buick.

The Portland Police Bureau are reminding community members that officers performing traffic stops would rarely be in a vehicle without clear police markings or official lights. All police officers encountering the public will have a badge and a photo ID from the issuing agency identifying themselves as sworn police officers.

Community members suspecting that someone is impersonating a police officer should immediately call 9-1-1. Anyone with information about this case is asked to provide it to crimetips@portlandoregon.gov.