Top right: Officers found a .380 semi-automatic handgun in Michael W. Metz Jr.'s possession during a traffic stop on Tuesday.
Bottom: Michael W. Metz Jr. created a identification badge for the Vigo County Sheriff's Department.
During a traffic violation stop in the area of the Knight and Leavitt streets intersection, Clay County Sheriff's Deputy Jerry Siddons and Sgt. Dave Archer arrested a Brazil resident for impersonating a public servant Tuesday evening.
Michael W. Metz Jr., 29, was traveling east on Knight Street with an unidentified female when he was pulled over by Deputy Siddons for rolling through a stop sign.
A background check showed that Metz was driving while suspended. Siddons also found a fake badge and identification card in Metz's possession. He was taken into custody.
Metz told officers that the articles were only used as a joke, but the Clay County Sheriff's Department have received previous complaints of him carrying a handgun and showing a badge to people but were unable to locate Metz.
A .380 semi-automatic handgun was discovered inside the vehicle when the female passenger who owned the car gave Sgt. Archer permission to search the vehicle.
Metz was arrested on charges of Impersonation of a public servant, a Class D felony; Driving while suspended, a Class A misdemeanor; and Possession of a handgun without a permit, a Class D felony.
Metz is in the Clay County Jail with a $7,000 cash bond with no 10 percent.
When being pulled over, Clay County Sheriff's Department Chief Deputy Doug Barr urges citizens to slowly drive to a well-lit populated area and/or call 911 before stopping and then inform officer of concerns when there is any question about a traffic stop.
"People can call dispatch and ask if an officer is pulling them over. All the details of the stop will be available right there," he said. "Any law officer worth his salt will understand the safety issues involved this type of situation."