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Florida man arrested for pretending to be an officer


A 65-year-old man was arrested after pretending to be an officer.

Robert M. Newsome of Sebastian, Florida was taken into custody on Monday near Mulligans Beach House restaurant.

The Sebastian Police Department says they were called to the area after receiving several reports of a man walking in the area with a badge and gun.

Witnesses say Newsome told them that he is with the sheriff’s office and needed their help investigating his stolen bait and fishing net.

While responding to the scene, a deputy noticed a man fitting the description of the suspect crossing U.S. Highway 1 with a gun in his waistband.

When Newsome saw the deputy, he took off his waistband and threw it in the bushes. 

The Newsome told investigators that the gun was a bb gun and that he threw it into the bushes because he did not want to get shot by officers. 

“He was fishing earlier; he often carries his BB gun while fishing due to his property being stolen in the past. Today he was wearing the BB gun openly. However, he believed he was permitted to do so. The BB gun that was in the bush belonged to him,” the deputy said.

Newsome also reportedly confessed to telling people that he was with the sheriff’s office and told them that he had a police badge that was given to him by a family member. 

While searching Newsome, authorities located a wallet that read “Sheriff’s Department” on the front. When they opened the wallet they found a police badge that read “Special Deputy St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office.”

He was arrested and charged with Impersonating a Law Enforcement Officer. He has been transported to the Indian River County Jail where he is currently being held on a $5,000 bond.