28-year-old Cleveland man shares terrifying story of being robbed by fake cops

Published: Apr. 4, 2023 at 10:38 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Cleveland police arrested one of at least four men who have been terrorizing drivers by posing as police officers, pulling them over, and robbing them at gunpoint.

Andrew Alexander, 28, was one of the victims. He said this past Saturday he had just picked up some food and cigars and was heading to his girlfriend’s house when he noticed a gray Kia Sportage following him.

At first, he thought it was suspicious. But when he saw flashing blue lights, he pulled his car over at West 48th Street and Clark Avenue.

“Of course, I do what I’m supposed to do when you see lights like that you know you pull over,” Alexander said. “I pull over thinking that maybe there’s a misunderstanding because I mean me, I didn’t do nothing wrong.”

Alexander figured he was getting pulled over by an undercover officer.

“I pulled over and I wasn’t expecting what happened next,” he said.

Over the past month, there have been five attacks by a group who have been impersonating Cleveland police officers.

“Next thing you know I found out that it wasn’t the boys in blue and it was just some young kids trying to rob me,” Alexander said.

Alexander said all three of the criminals were wearing ski masks, but he believes they were likely teenagers.

“Their height, their weight,” he said of why he thought they were young. “I wanna say just the way they presented themself.”

Alexander told 19 News the trio approached his car locked and loaded. He said two of them had pistols with extended magazines and the third was carrying an AK-47-style pistol.

Alexander has a concealed carry license and he had two guns on him.

“My first objective was to draw on them you know it’s my life or theirs, but a smart man knows when he’s outmanned and outgunned you know and you give up material things to live another day,” he said.

Alexander said he gave the group his gun, his phone, keys, and wallet and got out of his car.

“Almost ran me over in my own car and the other vehicle that pulled me over was traveling right behind him,” he recalled. “They sped down the street.”

Alexander said he was surprised that the crooks targeted him, a full-grown man who was armed.

“Not everybody is gonna take it as easily as I am you know I had to think about it in a different way,” said Alexander. “I had to think about it as you know am I about to be in a shootout with them and also they’re kids.”

Cleveland police released some photos of the cars involved in these crimes including a Dodge Durango and a black Jeep Cherokee.

“It definitely makes me furious that you know people go to work every day, these are people out here earning hard-earned money they’re putting in their grind, their sweat, and their tears every day for everything that they own just to get it taken by some young punks,” Alexander said.

Police are still looking for at least three more suspects and two other cars.

Authorities advise that if an unmarked car pulls you over the best thing to do is call 911 and drive to the nearest police station.