Woman’s claim of being attacked by police impersonator in Botetourt County, Virginia determined to be unfounded

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BOTETOURT, Va. (WFXR) — Virginia State Police found reports of a police impersonator assaulting a woman in Botetourt County were unfounded.

On March 7, police say a 20-year-old Roanoke woman claimed she was traveling south on I-81 and was stopped by a sedan with flashing red and blue lights somewhere between Buchanan and the City of Roanoke shortly after 10 p.m.

The woman reportedly told Virginia State Police the man told her to exit her vehicle, but when she did, she was pulled to the ground and hit in the head. The woman said she fought off the man, ran back to her vehicle, and sped away.

According to authorities, no report was made of the alleged attack until a family member called Roanoke City 911 at 11:38 p.m. that same night. The call was transferred to Virginia State Police before state troopers were dispatched to the area to conduct an extensive search for any vehicles fitting the description of the alleged attacker’s vehicle. However, police say no such vehicle was located.

Virginia State Police Trooper L.A. Dowdy was assigned to investigate the allegations, with the assistance of the Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s Salem Field Office.

However, according to officials, the woman’s statements to authorities about the encounter conflicted with statements posted on social media detailing the same incident.

Additional inconsistencies reportedly developed during the course of the investigation.

“State police took this incident very seriously, as it does any report of a police impersonator and/or a young woman being assaulted on the side of the road. We dedicated multiple uniform and investigative resources to this case to make certain no one else would or could be put at risk along I-81.”

Capt. Richard Denney, Virginia State Police Salem Division Commander

On Wednesday, April 7, after approaching the alleged victim again, Virginia State Police say she admitted her original account was untrue, adding that she made the story up because she was anxious.

According to police, the Botetourt County Commonwealth’s Attorney will not file any charges against the woman.

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