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24-Year-Old Man Impersonated Guard at Maryland Shopping Center: Police

The suspect is accused of making the victim pay $50 to get out of a ticket

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A man wearing a security guard uniform stopped a driver outside a shopping center in Montgomery County, Maryland, Saturday night and threatened to issue the driver a ticket if he didn't pay him $50, police say.

A 20-year-old man told Montgomery County Police he was driving through the parking lot near the Sears at the White Oak Shopping Center on New Hampshire Avenue about 6 p.m. when he mistakenly turned the wrong way on a one-way traffic lane.

Police say 24-year-old Kareem Hart, driving a Nissan Versa with Allied Security markings, then pulled behind the man and turned on a yellow flashing light on top of the car.

The victim stopped his car, and Hart, who was wearing a security uniform, told him he would write a $250 ticket because he turned the wrong way on a one-way lane, police said. Hart said he wouldn't write the ticket if the man paid him $50 via a payment app, police said.

After paying Hart the money, the victim left and called police.

Officers later found Hart at the parking lot and arrested him. He was charged with impersonating a police officer, extortion and false imprisonment.

Police say he was released on bond.

News4's Derrick Ward reports Allied Security is the company that provides security for the shopping center. Police are trying to determine if Hart actually works for the company.

Police say they are concerned that Hart might have represented himself as an officer in the past and are asking anyone who had a similar incident to call 240-773-6893.

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