Man impersonating U.S. Marshal flashes fake badge in shoplifting attempt, deputies say

Suspect has faced similar accusations in the past

Man impersonates U.S. Marshal, flashes fake badge in shoplifting attempt, deputies say (Flagler County Sheriff's Office)

PALM COAST, Fla. – A Flagler County man was arrested Friday after he told loss prevention officers he was a U.S. Marshal and flashed a fake badge in an attempt to shoplift groceries, deputies said.

Leroy Stotelmyer, 60, entered the Palm Coast Publix on Belle Terre Parkway around 7 p.m. and tried to leave the store without paying for two boxes of potatoes and a grouper filet, according to a news release.

When a loss prevention officer stopped Stotelmyer, he told the officer he did not need to pay for the items because he was a Marshal, deputies said. Stotelmyer then placed the groceries on the floor and walked out of the store, records show.

Deputies said the officer followed Stotelmyer to his car, where he then flashed a gold badge in a black holder that said “U.S. Marshal.”

Stotelmyer was located at his home on Hidden Treasure Drive by deputies and was arrested on charges of false impersonation of a federal law enforcement officer, petit shoplifting and resisting a merchant, according to records. Deputies said he has since bonded out of jail.

During the investigation, deputies said they noted a case from 2019 where a deputy conducted a traffic stop on Stotelmyer’s vehicle for failing to stop at a stop sign. According to a news release, Stotelmyer told the deputy he was a federal Air Marshal.

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