Two teenaged boys were arrested Thursday night for impersonating law enforcement, a felony, but their family says it was all just a prank.
The teens, Angel Torres Jr., 17 and Christian Jose Iturbe, 16, both of Cape Coral are accused of attempting to use high beam red and blue flashing lights from a smartphone to pull over a driver in North Cape Coral.
It happened on Chiquita Boulevard North. A driver called police and told them a vehicle behind him was flashing red and blue lights across the front windshield, and he began to stop because he thought an unmarked police car was pulling him over.
The driver realized as the vehicle got closer to him that it was a Nissan Altima and that made him feel unsure if it was really a police officer behind him. So, he called police and gave them the license plate number.
Police found the suspect’s vehicle as it made a moving violation so they stopped it. At that time, Torres was driving and Iturbe was the front seat passenger, and police discovered they used a combination of flashing their car’s high beams and used a Youtube video of flashing red and blue lights on Iturbe’s cell phone, according to police.
Cape police said: “…this particular case looks to be a criminally stupid prank”- but added that cases like it can be dangerous.
“Impersonators can have dangerous motives for trying to stop members of the public, and impersonators like this shake public confidence and make people second guess real police officers conducting legitimate law enforcement duties,” said CCPD Sergeant Dana Coston.
Back at the police station, police say Torres’ mother was creating a scene and had to be detained. She told officers her son was a rising soccer star and couldn’t afford to get in trouble.
Police say they should have thought of that before deciding to commit a felony.
We went to both of the teens’ homes, and spoke with Torres’ mother by phone, who said she believes the boys meant no harm.
Police say the man who the teens pulled over did everything right by calling 911 with he noticed something was amiss.