03:15PM, Monday 18 May 2020
A teenager who stole a car in Slough after pretending to be a police officer has been sent to a Young Offenders Institution.
Anthony Ward, 19, of Oxford Road, Ryton-on-Dunsmore, tricked his victim in Cumberland Avenue at about 1.45am on November 28.
The driver had just left a petrol station when he noticed a car being driven behind him at speed, with flashing blue and red lights.
Believing it was a police car, the victim pulled over to the side of a road.
A man exited the following vehicle and approached the driver’s window shining a torch towards the car before asking him to get out.
The victim complied but the stranger then jumped into the car and drove off at speed, followed by the vehicle behind.
On January 10, two people were caught out by the same con while driving along the M40 at about 5am.
Another victim’s car was driven away six days later after a man pulled over on the hard shoulder between junctions 13 and 14 of the M25 after believing a police car with illuminating lights was behind him.
Three further incidents took place January 16, 27 and 30 when victims were followed on the M3, the M4 and the A4, Great West Road in London.
However none of the victim’s cars were stolen during these incidents.
Police said the only car which has been recovered was the one stolen in Cumberland Avenue.
Ward, from Warwickshire, appeared at Aylesbury Crown Court on Wednesday (May, 13) where he admitted three charges of theft and three counts of attempted theft.
He was sentenced to three years and three months imprisonment in a Young Offenders Institution at the same hearing.
Investigating officer, DC Mark Banham, of Amersham Police Station said: “Anthony Ward has been sentenced to three years and three months’ in a Young Offenders Institution after he falsely said he was a police officer, before stealing cars belonging to members of the public.
“Cars belonging to victims would be followed at high speeds, displaying blue lights, until the victims pulled over. These are well meaning members of society who innocently believed that they were being pulled over by police.
“Their cars were then driven off, leaving them alone and without transport on long stretches of road and in the early hours of the morning.
“Three further attempts were made to force members of the public to pull over. Thankfully they did not and their cars were not stolen from them.”
He added if members of the public have any doubts about someone who identifies themselves as a police officer they should ask to see their warrant card.
All officers will carry the card which displays their photograph, name, shoulder number and include a hologram of the force’s crest and the signature of the chief constable.
You can also call 101 and give the officer’s shoulder number or name to the call handler to confirm their identity.
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