Cobb County

Police arrest man they said was posing as fake officer

ACWORTH, Ga. — Police say they captured a fake cop who had emergency lights, a badge and a radio.

Acworth police told Channel 2 Cobb County Bureau Chief Michele Newell that they aren’t sure how long the suspect was posing as an officer, but they say that when they spotted him, he was driving an unmarked retired police car that had emergency lights mounted on the front, the side and back of the car.

“The uniform looked just like a police officer uniform. The vehicle was an old, retired police car,” Cpl. Eric Mistretta with the Acworth Police Department said.

Police identified the man as Jerardson Mackey. He was charged with impersonating an officer.

“Pretending to be a police officer, it puts everyone at risk,” one driver said, asking not to be identified.

“It’s very concerning. Very frustrating and scary because I’m a female driver,” driver Mary Timbers said.

Police said Mackey activated emergency lights on a white Dodge Charger as soon as they tried to pull him over.

“He had a full duty belt as police officers wear. The only thing missing was a gun, but he did have the magazine patches on his gun belt,” Mistretta said. “He had patches on the side that said Georgia. He had name tags and a rank insignia on his collar.”


Before the traffic stop, police say they spotted Mackey speeding on Lake Acworth Drive.

“Using his emergency lights, he was having other vehicles yield to him and other vehicles thought he was a true emergency vehicle,” Mistretta said.

When police caught up to Mackey, they say he claimed to be an off-duty HERO operator and showed them his badge.

“We found out that he was actually terminated in January and that he failed to turn his badge in. He said he lost it,” Mistretta said.

Police say if someone gets behind you with emergency lights on, you should do a few things.

“Pull over in a public safe area, well lit, and if you feel it is not a real police officer, you can call 911,” Mistretta said.

Police aren’t sure how long Mackey was posing as an officer, but they are calling other jurisdictions to figure that out.