GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WJZ) — The FBI is now investigating a Maryland man authorities believe was parading around as both a police officer and immigration officer though he has no ties to law enforcement.
Both police and the FBI say 35-year-old Itai Ozderman from Gaithersburg potentially impersonated both local and immigration police in and around the northern Virginia area for an unknown amount of time.
They say he was seen attempting to enforce criminal law, despite having no law enforcement background. Investigators say he was seen sporting a ballistic vest, similar to one worn by immigration officers.
“It’s very alarming and have disastrous consequences” said Rick Goodale of the Montgomery County police.
WJZ learned last month the FBI, Montgomery County and Falls Church police raided Ozderman’s home. During the raid police found a number of handguns, tactical gear, and even a Baltimore County police badge.
Police also found ammo, and a working police radio. WJZ stopped by Ozderman’s home following his release on bail, but no one answered.
Investigators say they caught wind of it all after unearthing a bogus operation being conducted by Ozderman.
Court documents revealed the FBI was called in because it also involved Ozderman’s alleged girlfriend, a Falls Church City police detective.
“It’s embarrassing, it’s a gut check,” said police chief Mary Gavin.
Documents revealed the detective in question was also tricked into believing he was a Baltimore County police officer working on an ICE task force.
Police are unclear of how much access Ozderman may have had. He was employed by the Washington Post as an IT worker. His attorney says he’s now been suspended.
WJZ did talk to some of Ozderman’s neighbors off camera who say they stunned by the allegations. Aside from impersonating a police officer, Ozderman also faces gun charges.
The investigation into Ozderman’s alleged actions is ongoing. It’s also unclear whose, if anyone, the Baltimore County police badge belonged to.