Public Safety Message From the Jackson Police Department



We have received several questions from the public of what should someone do if they think the person stopping them is not a police officer.

First if you are in Cape Girardeau County, no law enforcement agency has black and white patrol vehicles. All of the patrol vehicles are solid colors.

If the vehicle attempting to pull you over is not a clearly marked police cruiser -- or a car or truck that isn't routinely used for police work and you think something's just not right -- you should slow down (to indicate you are not trying to get away, in case it is a real police officer), turn on your hazard lights and then signal your intent to pull over -- but only do so when you can find a well-lit, public place with other people around, such as a gas station, police station or some place you feel safe.

If you do pull over immediately, you can keep your doors locked and only crack the window enough to pass your driver's license and registration through.

Get a good look at the "officer" and his credentials. If the "officer" is not in uniform, refuses to show you his badge -- or just flashes it briefly, so you can't get a good look -- keep that window rolled up and those doors locked tightly.

Ask to see credentials. All Jackson Police Officers carry a police ID card with them. If he won't let you see the ID card, tell the "officer" that you'd like for him to call another officer to the scene. A real officer will understand your concern and have no problem with calling a fellow officer (or supervisor) to the scene.

If you have a cell phone, immediately dial 911 -- and tell the operator that you have been pulled over by someone who claims to be a police officer but that you think he might not be a real cop. Tell the operator exactly where you are -- and stay on the line. If it's a real officer, you'll know very soon. Jackson Police Officers notify communications when and where we are making a traffic stop at and they can tell you real quick if it’s a Jackson Police Officer. Please stay on the phone if in doubt. Also remember all 911 calls made in the City of Jackson may not be answered at our office. But the 911 operators will transfer you to our department.


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