Alleged police, and EMT impersonator arrested in Merrimack
MERRIMACK – Police say 22-year-old Obadiah Croteau drove a green Dodge Charger outfitted with “much of the same equipment” as a police cruiser, including emergency flashing lights on the roof, so it’s not surprising most people who saw Croteau stopped at crashes or other road incidents assumed he was a police officer.
But when 911 operators began receiving similar calls from people at unrelated crash scenes, who all reported an officer was already on the scene, police launched an investigation that led to Croteau’s arrest over the weekend on charges that include a felony count of false personation of law enforcement.
Croteau, of 2 Executive Park Drive, unit 111, was also charged with violating the state’s security services license requirement and conducting prohibited emergency medical and trauma services acts, both of which are Class A misdemeanors.
Police said they arrested Croteau on a warrant, and after processing at police headquarters he was released on personal recognizance bail pending arraignment, which is scheduled for March 21 in Hillsborough County Superior Court South in Nashua.
Police said they started investigating Croteau back in October, and in reviewing the “multiple accident scenes in Merrimack” where Croteau allegedly showed up, learned he was known to wear a security uniform and allegedly “represented himself to be a first responder” and “could provide medical care if needed,” police said.
Croteau didn’t limit his alleged road patrols to crashes, according to police, who cited an incident in which he allegedly drove up to a disabled vehicle and stopped. He allegedly identified himself as being with “a roadside service company,” police said, and also sought personal information from the driver.
Croteau reportedly told police his cruiser look-alike is owned by his company, “Propel Entertainment,” which, he said, provides “executive protection and bodyguard services.”
But police said they found no licensing documents listed to either Croteau or his company, which is required by state law.
He did, however, allegedly have several different identification cards with him, police said, along with an ID card printer.
The cards identified Croteau as an “executive protection officer,” and a “first responder.” Likewise, Croteau “does not hold any valid” state-issued licenses that allow him to ” provide any type of medical services,” police added.
In February 2016, according to two Vermont-based news outlets, an Obadiah Croteau, age 19 at the time, was arrested in Bennington, Vt. on a warrant stemming from allegations he unlawfully conducted a traffic stop in St. Johnsbury in December 2015.
The website mychamplainvalley.com reported Croteau was charged with impersonating a law enforcement officer and issued a citation to appear in court.
Croteau, reportedly driving a rental vehicle, allegedly flashed his headlights and the amber emergency flashers to pull over the driver, who told police a man dressed in camouflage and wearing a gun accused him of speeding, and told him to slow down, the website reported.
The outcome of that case wasn’t immediately known.