SANTA ANA, Calif. (KTLA) — Two people are behind bars accused of carrying out a robbery scheme that involved the suspects dressing up as cops.
Authorities believe it was part of one woman’s plot to get revenge on her ex-boyfriend.
The victim was walking away from a food truck on North Spurgeon Street last December when he was stopped by two men with badges.
“They call him by name as he’s walking from the vending truck,” said Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
“They identify themselves as Ontario police detectives and that they want to talk to him,” he explained.
The men were wearing badges that were hanging on chains around their necks, similar to what detectives wear, according to Bertagna.
They had replica guns and were driving a Dodge Charger, which looks similar to a police vehicle.
“They had a yellow Taser, they had collapsible batons, they had vests similar to what detectives wear,” Bertagna said.
“So by all means, when these persons identified themselves as police officers, the victim thought that, in fact, they were.”
But the men weren’t cops. Instead, police say, they were frauds intent on beating the victim and robbing him.
Police say that the person behind the scheme was the victim’s ex-girlfriend, 36-year-old Rosa Tinoco.
“Obviously she was a very jealous person,” Bertagna said.
That jealousy is what helped break the case weeks later, when the victim noticed Tinoco following him in that Dodge Charger with one of the fake cops.
That man has been identified as 26-year-old Jose Paredes. Police are still searching for the other male suspect.
He is described as a Hispanic male about 20 years old, 5’6″ tall and 170 pounds. He may be a security guard, according to police.
The vehicle the suspects used was a charcoal gray 2007 Dodge Charger with chrome rims.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Cpl. A. Silva at 714-245-8545, or O.C. Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS (1-855-847-6227).