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Badge Player Scam

A suspect posing as an undercover police officer needs your help capturing a bank employee who has been working with some area con-artists. To do this, he needs you to remove a large sum of money from your account for fingerprinting.  Once the fake officer has the money, he is never seen again.

This scam usually occurs to a victim who has already been scammed once. The new suspect is often working with the con-artists from the earlier offense.

Here’s how it might happen:

  • The suspect identifies himself as a police officer and shows the victim a fake badge.
  • The fake police officer tells the victim that he has identified the suspects from the earlier case and that they are in custody.
  • The fake police officer then tells the victim that a bank employee may have been working with the suspects in custody. To confirm this, the fake officer needs the victim withdraw money from a particular teller at that bank.
  • The victim then gives his money to the fake officer for fingerprinting. The fake officer  assures the victim that the police will return his money to his account, but the money is never returned.

What to do if approached

  • Follow your gut. If  it doesn’t feel right, it isn’t.
  • Ask the individual to present his departmental issued picture ID.
  • If you still do not feel comfortable, ask for a uniform officer to respond to the scene.
  • Know this – no real member of the police department should ever ask for money in connection with any case.
  • This is a sure sign of a scam.
  • If the suspects leave, get a license plate and call 9-1-1.


Should you become the victim of a theft by trick, con man or other theft by deception contact your locate police district or the Financial Crimes and Fraud Unit on (202) 727-4159.