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Male From Ryton on Dunsmore Sentenced

Anthony Ward, aged 19, of Oxford Road, Ryton-on-Dunsmore, was sentenced to three years and three months imprisonment in a Young Offenders Institution at Aylesbury Crown Court on Wednesday (13th May), for three counts each of theft, and attempted theft.
He pleaded guilty to the charges at the same hearing.
The conviction is in relation to a Thames Valley Police investigation and incidents which occurred in November 2019 and January 2020.
At around 1.45am on 28th November 2019, the victim had left a petrol station in Cumberland Avenue, Slough, and was driving along Cumberland Avenue when he noticed a car driving very closely behind him at speed, with illuminating blue and red lights.
The victim believed it was a police vehicle, so pulled over into a side road.
A man exited the vehicle and approached his driver side window shining a torch towards the victim’s car but did not say anything. The victim was then asked to get out of the car, which he complied with.
An offender then got into his car and drove off in it at speed, along with the other car.
Then on 10th January this year, two people were driving along the M40 at around 5am. They noticed a vehicle driving behind them at speed, with an illuminating blue light.
After pulling over, they were approached by a man who said he was a police officer. They were asked to step out of the car, and as they did the offender got into the car and drove off.
On 16th January, another victim’s car was driven away after he pulled over in the hard shoulder between junctions 13 and 14 of the M25, after believing a police car with illuminating lights was behind him. Again, the victim was told by the offender that he was a police officer, before his car was driven away after he got out.
Three further incidents took place on 16th, 27th and 30th January, when victims were followed on the M3, the M4 and the A4, Great West Road in London. However none of the victim’s cars were stolen during these incidents.
At this time, only the car from the first incident has been recovered.
Investigating officer, DC Mark Banham, of Amersham police station said: “Anthony Ward has been sentenced to three years and three months’ in a Young Offenders Institution after he falsely said he was a police officer, before stealing cars belonging to members of the public.
“Cars belonging to victims would be followed at high speeds, displaying blue lights, until the victims pulled over. These are well meaning members of society who innocently believed that they were being pulled over by police.
“Their cars were then driven off, leaving them alone and without transport on long stretches of road and in the early hours of the morning.
“Three further attempts were made to force members of the public to pull over. Thankfully they did not and their cars were not stolen from them.
“If you have any doubt about someone who identifies themselves to you as a police officer, you can always ask to see their warrant card. All officers, including covert officers, will carry their warrant card with them. Their warrant card will display their photograph, name and shoulder number and will include a hologram of the force crest and the signature of the Chief Constable. You can also call 101 and give the officer’s shoulder number or name to the call handler and they will be able to confirm the officer’s identity.”