RICHMOND, Maine — Richmond Police Chief Scott MacMaster said Tuesday that a 19-year-old man stopped this weekend while driving a light blue pickup truck with flashing blue lights is likely “a wannabe” officer, and police are less concerned as they’ve continued the investigation.
Everett Perry was stopped at about 9 p.m. Saturday on Main Street near Interstate 295 after police allegedly observed that his 1985 Dodge Ram pickup truck had no inspection sticker, MacMaster said. Perry was issued summonses for operating without a license and illegal attachment of registration plates after discovering the license plate did not belong to him.
Perry, who gave police an Edgecomb address but is believed to be staying in Richmond, told officers that the blue lights in the truck’s grill were fog lights, but after the vehicle was towed to Rick’s Towing Service, police found four flashing blue LED lights.
The truck had been painted light blue — a shade similar to Maine State Police cruisers — within the last few days, according to MacMaster.
Before police could contact Perry to question him, he was stopped Monday while driving the truck in the same area , according to MacMaster. At that point, the truck was registered to a new owner, who was following it closely.
When police explained that the lights were illegal, the new owner said he didn’t realize they were there and immediately tore them off the truck.
Perry received another summons for operating without a license.
The incidents occurred several months after a 60-year-old Richmond woman reported being stopped by a man who told her he was a law enforcement officer, but police found no record of the call.
MacMaster said Perry denied having stopped the woman, and police have established no connection.
“He said he put the lights in because they cut through the fog,” the chief said.
MacMaster said police were initially concerned that Perry might have stopped the woman, “but the more we looked in to it, the less concerned we became. I kind of get the feeling that he is, for lack of a better term, a wannabe. We don’t feel there was any malicious intent.”
Still, he said the incident serves as a reminder for drivers to be alert when they are stopped.
“At night, if you’re familiar with the area, go to a well-lit area,” he said. “You always have the option to give dispatch a call to see if it is, in fact, a police officer pulling you over. And you can ask for the officer’s radio call number, his badge number or his immediate supervisor.”
Perry is scheduled to appear in West Bath District Court on July 8 to face the misdemeanor charges.