Police: 'Officer' talking to kids was not Colonie cop
October 10, 2019 11:37 PM
COLONIE - In an upscale neighborhood, it remains a down right mystery.
"I would venture to guess if this guy is in fact a police officer, he wasn't on duty," Colonie Police Lieutenant Bob Winn stated.
Winn describes what happened as a bizarre encounter. It was 11:00 p.m. Tuesday night in the Bergen Woods development, just off Boght Road in Colonie.
There were two kids in a car, from Troy, who were lost and asking for directions.
"They were confronted by an individual that was yelling at them," Winn said, "he showed them what they thought was a badge, and then punched one of the individuals in the car in the chest."
The encounter was captured on cell phone video which shows an incident that escalated from rude to racist to potentially criminal.
"The fact that he punched the kid in the chest is a violation of harassment in the second degree, a prosecutable offense," Winn points out.
Something that isn't prosecutable, but problematic, is what happened next, when the video went viral on social media and people began bad-mouthing and berating Colonie Police, wrongly assuming one of their officers was involved.
"Unbeknownst to us, on social media, we were accused, indicted, convicted, and then when we became aware of it, we filed an appeal and we've been acquitted," Winn says.
the badge-carrying instigator may not be as fortunate. Additional video shows him wearing shorts and sneakers, running toward a dark SUV, escaping into the night.
"More troubling is that this is potentially a police officer who clearly is acting outside his authority or maybe even worse, somebody impersonating a police officer," Winn says.
Winn says no one at Colonie PD recognized the man's voice and no other local police agency has a badge number 288.
Winn advises if you think the person standing outside your car is not a cop, get away from the area, find a well-lit public place, and call 911 right away.
Updated: October 10, 2019 11:37 PM
Created: October 10, 2019 01:51 PM
Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved