Newmarket man behind bars for pretending to be an officer
BRENTWOOD — A police impersonator is being jailed on charges that he flashed a badge at women in Epping and Stratham and tried to get them to pull over their cars, prosecutors said.
Michael Heath, 42, of 184 New Road in Newmarket is being held on $25,000 cash bail following his video arraignment in 10th Circuit Court in Brentwood.
He faces two counts of false personation.
Heath was arrested by Hampton police late last week on a warrant seeking his arrest in the Stratham case, which allegedly mimicked an encounter that a woman had with another driver in Epping about 10 months earlier.
A 36-year-old woman first reported to Epping police on Nov. 9 that a man pulled up next to her while she was at the intersection of Routes 125 and 27.
“The subject was waving the badge in her direction and motioning for her to pull her car over,” Epping detective Sean Gallagher said in a sworn affidavit.
The woman did not believe the man, later identified as Heath, was a police officer, according to Gallagher.
Heath was driving a green 2005 Buick Century when he pulled up to the woman. She noticed the car registration was a New Hampshire veteran plate with a vanity registration that read DEFIANT, according to the affidavit.
“She described the badge as a round badge with a star on it,” Gallagher said.
Epping police were able to identify Heath as the police impersonator shortly after the incident, but had not been able to find him.
Stratham police said a similar incident happened in their town on Aug. 29 along Route 108, when a man pulled up alongside a woman in her car, waved a badge and motioned for the woman to pull over.
Stratham police tracked down Heath on Aug. 31, and questioned him about both incidents.
“During the interview, Heath admitted to showing a badge at a subject in Stratham and telling them to pull over,” Gallagher said in the affidavit. He admitted to a similar incident in Epping back in November, police said.
Heath is due back in court for two probable cause hearings on Sept. 20 and Sept. 24.